It’s Garden Wildlife week! As the summer kicks off, it’s a perfect time to think of the wild animals in our gardens and how we can help them to thrive this season.

If you’re lucky enough to have an outdoor space, here are some simple steps you can take to help the wildlife in your garden, backyard or balcony.

Put out a water source

Birds at water bowl

As temperatures rise and we enter dry summer spells, putting out a water source in your garden can be a lifesaver for animals like hedgehogs and birds. You don’t need anything fancy, a simple saucer filled with water will do the trick. Just make sure to keep it clean and regularly topped up.

Check out this handy guide from the RSPB on where best to place a birdbath in your garden so they can safely access water away from predators like cats.

Help birds to nest

Bird box in garden

If possible, it’s a good idea to have a nesting box in your garden year-round to provide refuge for migratory birds arriving at different points of the year.

It’s important to get the placement of your nestbox right, so that birds are properly sheltered from predators and weather extremes. Here’s are some tips from the British Ornithology Trust on where best to put a birdbox in your garden.

An additional easy thing you can do for garden birds during the summer is to create a mud puddle for them! House martins can struggle to make nests during summer dry spells due to the scarcity of mud. Simply fill a container with soil and water and put it out for birds to make their homes with.

Create shade spots for animals

Hedgehog in garden

Provide a refuge for animals like frogs and hedgehogs by making a log pile of dead wood in a corner of your garden. Not only is it a spot for them to stay safe and cool but also acts as a food source since insects thrive in these spaces.

Make sure to keep the log pile out of direct sunlight and away from living trees and shrubs.

Let your garden grow wild

Wild flowers

Keep your lawnmower in the shed this summer, or at least reserve a spot for grass and wildflowers to grow freely. This will help pollinators like bees and butterflies to thrive in your garden.

A wilder garden can also provide more habitats, shelter and food for other garden creatures like hedgehogs.

Plant pollinator-friendly flowers


As bees and butterflies face a decline globally due to habitat loss, climate change, pesticides and pollution, the more we can do to support them in our gardens, the better. One great way to help is by planting pollinator-friendly plants in your garden.

Make use of whatever space you have – even if you only have a small backyard or balcony, flower pots will do the job too.

Do you have any tips for helping wild animals thrive in gardens? Let us know in the comments if we’ve missed anything.