Being an avid fan of feeding wild birds and other wildlife in-and-around our garden, it's always a treat when something happens by sheer chance and coincidence. And it does get much better than when that coincidence benefits other wildlife, too.
For instance - most of our feeders generally have black sunflower seeds in the tube feeder to some degree, as we know they are a great source of food for our visiting birds. However, for reasons beyond our knowing the odd sunflower seed gets redistributed in the garden by some untidy little blighter who, as yet, hasn't managed to strip the outer husk off the seed and drops it.
Now, of course, as gardeners - or at least someone who appreciates a green space to sit in and enjoy - seed germination caused by your feathered friends can be slightly annoying, after all it's us who have to de-weed the boarders etc of some strange looking growth! However...a plus-point of the sunflower seed is the fact that it eventually grows, and produces, one of the most beautiful and impressive flowers in our garden. With an average height of 6 feet these giants certainly tower over everything else. They are a native species of America (sunflowers are in the genus Helianthus) but grow well in our country when we are blessed with favourable weather conditions during the summer months (southern parts of the UK specialise in growing them and can yield bumper crops - this year being a perfect example as a single crop can be worth in-excess of £80,000.00+!).
But despite their obvious beauty it's also the insects that they attract and support especially when in flower. I took the above photo the other week and, although I managed to get 3 bees in the picture, there was originally 6 on the plant! (The other 3 leaving just before I pressed the button!). There are 3 sunflowers in the garden this year and none where planted by ourselves, so they were obviously created by our birds feeding.
And, somehow, in my mind it feels even better than if we'd have planted them ourselves; it just feels right that the flowers have germinated without our input but, by our visiting birds coming to the garden.
It's the ebb and flow of life which is inherent in nature; what gives, takes and, what takes, gives. Nature can be perfect, but only if we give it chance.
Hi. I'm Phil Stokes and I'll be blogging on here about what's new and happening at Gala Wildlife. Come back for updates.