Saturday, March 26, 2016


The "Friendly Little House" is decorative, not utilitarian. The stump is utilitarian! The decorative element camouflages a grid-pattern of drilled holes that provides a place for solitary bees to lay their eggs.  Six inches deep, the holes provide a perfect, protected place. Because the holes blend in with the bark, they are difficult to see in this photo. They are located just below the watering can in front of the little, winding fence. This is the stump of a pine tree that was cut down last year. The little house came about from my habit of looking for attractive additions to the landscape that will also serve the purpose of providing a haven for critters.

The house is a standard birdhouse without openings, as I thought bees might not like the risk of being eaten by birds. It is made of sturdy, solid maple. The roof is sided with the rough bark that was chiseled away from the stump. Mosses (green, brown and orange) tucked in among the slabs of bark, came from a variety of places in a yard that is quickly becoming too shady. The little attached shed, originally a waxy carton that held coffee cream, was covered with individual scales removed from a giant pine cone and roofed with the same rough bark as the house.

Get the kids--with their wonderful imaginations--to help devise garden plans. Everyone will get satisfaction from giving nature a boost and providing a pleasing garden feature.

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