Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Backyard Biodiversity for Beginners Part 1 - Introduction

As people begin to take notice of some very shocking consequences, we are all discovering that, "Pesticides" are bad. They're bad for people as well as all living things. 

So there is now a new revolution to bring ourselves back to days when everything was pure and clean and organic. 

We are finding ourselves scrambling to become greener in a world quickly becoming extinct of all its biodiversity.

 The extinction of precious natural habitats that have now become new neighborhoods for our rapidly growing populations has also taken its toll on natural resources. 

It is in our neighborhoods and communities where we can all take a slow step back and reflect upon these important issues. 

By simply taking a look at your own backyard you take the most important step toward bringing some sort of balance back into the world. 

Biodiversity is very complicated as a whole, but can be quite simple at the same time. My first wish is that we may all quit using chemicals. 

We must quit using chemicals on our lawns, our landscaping and our gardens.

Once this is accomplished it becomes the starting point when we discover organic practices has an open door to a vast array of challenges that was at one time very common knowledge.

 So, we must challenge ourselves to learn and understand some simple relationships that take place in our own yards. After all, nature should be enjoyed with all of its beauty and wonders and preserved for future generations.

Common Garden Orb Spider

I began my day inspired by a simple spider. Biodiversity is quite simple in that when the garden is viewed as a natural canopy for which habitat survives, it begins to unfold a relationship between each living thing. 

The picture of this spider was taken in my garden during the summer when an unusual outbreak of grasshoppers occurred. 

It had been approximately 4 years since I had last used pesticides in the garden. I also had an unusual population of garden spiders this year. This spider has her juicy meal all wrapped up for lunch. 

Grasshoppers can munch down the vegetable patch very quickly and I found very minimal damage. I had made an allowance for natural predators to live in my garden by not killing them. 

Some may find the garden orb spider creepy, some may find her beautiful, but I must say I find her very helpful.

We must all spread the good news that nature works without our help. 

I was quite thankful that as my neighbor was about to spread pesticides on her hay fields to kill the grasshoppers, she had an open heart to our message and didn't do it. 

How much more could I ask that we didn't have run off from pesticides washing down into the creek and a little more nature could live.

Bumblebee and Mammoth Grey Stripped Sunflower

As you begin your plight into organics, just remember that biodiversity doesn't happen over night. If your veggies aren't perfect and some things dwindle, keep in mind that it takes a little time for nature to recover

Things you can't see with your eyes are coming into place. The relationships to consider are your soil, plants, water and light. 

There is life in the soil that must be restored. Little micro organisms and earthworms that you cannot see. The best you can do is to begin composting. 

You should select plants that are native to your area and organic heirloom vegetables for your region.

 Rain water is full of minerals and nutrients which is the best source of water to have. You simply cannot get the same benefits from your water sprinkler so perhaps a rain water collection system might be considered. 

Using the correct amount of light to suit the needs of specific plants all plays a vital part in the success of your garden and landscape.

 But most importantly you must begin to see your backyard as a natural canopy with a forest floor. Not  a perfectly manicured lawn and not planting in exact rows. But mixing each specie with a companion to share its space. 

Set back and enjoy the miracles that nature provides.

Caterpillar soon to bloom into a butterfly

Happy Gardening!!


  1. You are so right am. We all have to start somewhere.

  2. Hi Pammy,

    I am 100% with you in your outlook on 'all things organic' :) We have a very small garden and don't grow anything edible apart from herbs as there just isn't room, apart from the odd tomato plant, but in recent years it has become important to our family to 'buy organic' wherever we can,, including eggs, veg, fruit and support freerange eggs, meat and fish rather than intensive farmed.

    We also compost EVERYTHING we can and recycle practically everything so not much rubbish is collected from this house haha!

    Thanks for putting the message out there.

    Lesley x

    ps I can't abide spiders in the house although really appreciate their beauty in the garden haha!

  3. Nice pictures Pammy! I wish chemicals weren't so prevalent either. We live in the middle of corn and soybean country so spraying and "Round-Up Ready" crops are the norm. Just over an hour east of here is a big Amish/Mennonite community,and it's always so nice to vist there and see the difference in the way they treat the soil of their gardens and farms.

  4. Hi Lesley,
    Isn't it strange that no matter how much ocean is between us, we seem to be all facing the same sort of problems. I know what you mean about insects in the house. They really are quit a bit nicer outdoors. LOL I'm so very glad you popped in for a blog visit =) I'll be by to see you soon!!

  5. Thanks so much Rhonda! I love driving out to the Amish farms when I visit my mother in upstate New York. It is so beautiful and I love their houses and big red barns!!! I wish we had homes like those down south!!

  6. So glad you stopped in Karen!! Your always so very supportive xxooxx

  7. Just found your blog. Thanks for the inspiration! We are so hoping for enough water to garden here this year in North West Texas.

    1. Hi dkstxrn!! I'm glad you found us as well!! I sure understand on the drought end of things and know it was extremely tough for you in West Texas. I've great hopes for a blessed gardening season and huge harvest for all =D ~ Pammy

  8. I'm so excited to have stumbled upon this blog! I am currently re-investing in my garden and it's all I want to do! (can you say obsessed!) I'm being sneaky at work so I"ll have to read more soon.
    Thanks for sharing your wisdom with