A sanctuary in the yard

I have a big unruly bush in the front yard. I had to search back thru blogs to remember when I got this plant. It was in 2011 and I wrote a blog about it then. https://sarasinart.net/2012/10/04/roughleaf-dogwood/

I didn’t know that the 6″ single stick, with almost no roots, would get to be such a good thing. As the previous blog said, I had no idea what a different kind of dogwood this was, as it started to bloom at the wrong time of the year, etc.

9 years later this thing has been trimmed a couple times and it probably 15′ tall. Now, it’s a perfect wildlife sanctuary. It’s a place of constant activity for birds: cardinals, cat birds, even blue jays are in and out of it all day long in the summer. It’s dense and allows birds to fly into it and not be seen, or perch on an outside branch to have a high vantage point. It’s amazing to sit and watch how many birds are in and out. Sometimes there are squabbles in the bush, when one bird gets a spot that another wanted. In the winter when the leaves are gone, it’s still used as a stop over and vantage point, particularly by 2 pairs of cardinals that stay around here year round.

It’s out at the front of the lot beside my house and there’s not much other cover out there so the birds make use of it as a safe place to land as they fly around here. It’s also good for rabbits to hide under, and we have our share of annual baby bunnies as well as adults here right now. Hawks would find it hard to get under there to grab out a baby bunny.

It’s been flowering in the last couple weeks. The flowers attract lots of butterflies and must attract lots of other bugs too, cos the birds are constantly picking things from the flowers. So the benefits go up the food chain. After the flowers are done, in a bit some green berries form, and birds love them too.

A wildlife sanctuary and later food for birds, a plant good for pollinators, and safety from rabbits getting picked up by hawks, all in one big unruly bush. The unruliness of it doesn’t bother me, cos it’s so beneficial to so many animals here.

Having a yard and a garden is fun and sometimes you end up with something so good as an outcome; something you never expected.

9 responses to “A sanctuary in the yard

    • There is a small woods behind the house and that’s good for lots of wildlife. But it’s so good to see so much activity in my own yard, in and around this huge plant.

    • Tony you speak languages that I don’t speak. It’s definitely not showy bracts like the tree we all recognize around here as dogwood. The flowers are simple little groupings. The Iink to the older blog showed the flowers. So it’s not a beautiful plant, but bugs must collect in it cos birds are getting something from the flowers all the time. And butterflies and bees, they all like the flowers. It’s always a place of big activity. It’s heartwarming to see how important it is to the birds around here.

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