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low/no maintenance bird garden?

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by Jiffymouse on March 11, 2006 10:48 PM
i have an area outside my computer room window that gets full, south/west sun that would be perfect for a bird garden. i say that because i had an entire flock (30-50) small brown birds (not sure what they are, maybe sparrows?), a baby? jay? and a couple of doves feeding at the feeder in that area. anyway, i was thinking i should plant a garden there, around the birdfeeder since they like it so much. now, i just need help with what to put in it.

the only thing is that it is hard to get to, so it needs to be low/no maintenance.
by Thornius on March 12, 2006 02:30 AM
Try Planting Black Oil Sunflower seeds. They make BEAUTIFUL flowers, attract American Goldfinches by the dozens when they go to seed, and before they go to seed, bring in bees and butterflies by the dozens, also. They plant themselves in my yard where they sprout up near my feeders from seeds dropped by birds. (And the seeds are edible and delicious to humans, too).

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by patches1414 on March 12, 2006 12:35 PM
I didn't know Goldfinches liked the Black Oil Sunflower seeds because I've never seen them at my feeders with the Sunflower seeds. They only seem to like the feeders that have the Thistle (Niger) Seed in them. Do you happen to know why they don't go after my sunflower seeds? [dunno]

patches [kitty]

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"Lord, I love you and I need you, come into my heart, and bless me, my family, my home, and my friends, in Jesus' name. Amen!"
by Thornius on March 16, 2006 02:14 AM
They prefer to eat Sunflower Seeds off the heads of the growing, living flowers. They will come to your feeders in Winter when they are in Winter Plummage.
For Sunflower Seeds, American Goldfinches prefer the broad flat platform feeders rather the tube feeders. For some strange reason they will only eat Niger Thistle Seeds out of a tube feeder or sock feeder. Go figure. [dunno] [dunno] [dunno]

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by Thornius on March 16, 2006 02:20 AM
I prefer to eat my Sunflower Seeds shelled and roasted, with plenty of salt, out of those little thin plastic feeders that say, "Planters" on the top.

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by hisgal2 on March 26, 2006 01:56 AM
Jiffy,
The easiest thing that I've found yet was from walmart. They have wild flower seeds in 10 oz. canesters for $6.00. The canaster says that it'll cover up to 500 sq. feet! The following is a list of types of seeds in the canaster...nothing exceeds 5% of total mixture: Phesant's Eye, Canterbury Bell, Siberian Wallflower, Wallflower, Clarkia, Tickseed, Cosmos, Larkspur, Sweet William, Farewell-To-Spring, Mallow, Baby Snapdragon, Scarlet Flax, Maltese Cross, Malope, Lemon Mint, Flander's Poppy, Phlox, Pink Soapwart, Silene, and Zinnia.

25% of what is in the canaster is seeds and 75% is Inert Matter.....whatever that is! [dunno] Anyways, I used this last year on the one side of our house and it worked well. I got a new canaster to use in the back on one of our small hills.

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by Starla in GA on April 03, 2006 12:29 PM
I picked up one of these wildflower mixes this weekend. I sprinkled the mix along the back on my fence, Can't wait to see how it turns out!

Thanks!

BTW they had several *mixes* shade loving, sun loving, *fragrant*, and even one that claims to attract birds and butterflies (thats the one I bought) VERY NICE suggestion!

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by Thornius on April 03, 2006 11:56 PM
STARLA! You have a bunny! [grin] I have a male Black Lop-Eared bunny named Two Bean Bags! Christina has a male white bunny named Jack!

The bird in your birdhouse is a Tufted Titmouse. They LOVE Black OIL Sunflower Seeds in a tube feeder or on a platform feeder. I had a Tufted Titmouse at my feeders yeaterday evening. They like to hang out with Chickadees who will also use your birdhouses, too.

I bet you're in or near the Chattanooga or Rossville area. I lived in Chattanooga as a boy. I am now in Nashville, TN where I have retired and now spend my days observing and photographing birds in the real world, but living in the virtual world of the internet. They call me The Bird Man here. Good to meet you!

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by Starla in GA on April 07, 2006 11:55 PM
Thornius,
YES I live *right* outside of Chattanooga(near the battle field). I am a Florida native but moved up here 12 yrs ago and LOVE it here!

Thank you so much for identifying the bird for me! I hadn't figured out what it was yet and keep forgetting to look him up. I think I'm going to break down and buy a field guide of some sort to help me identify the birds in my yard. (any suggestions???)

We just got the rabbits last week so are still figuring out what they like , and having a blast in the process... now to keep dandy OUT of my herbs LOL.

Nice to meet a neighbor!

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by Thornius on April 08, 2006 05:55 AM
Starla, You'll want to buy, "The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Eastern North America", commonly called just, "Sibley's" by birders. It is the BEST guide EVER made for North American birds and costs around $20.00 at most bookstores.
I buy my rabbit food at TSC, 20 pounds for $7.00. They also have 50 pounds of Black Oil Sunflower Seeds for $14.00 at TSC. 20 pounds of rabbit food lasts my rabbit about 2 months. Rabbits also like fresh willow branches. I have a big Weeping Willow tree in my frontyard, and I give my bunny ALL the prunings. Bunnies like apples, too, and try giving them Sugar frosted Mini-wheat cereal or any other sugar frosted cereals as a treat. The bunny will instantly fall in love with you. and they like toys, especially balls, ballons, and rags or plastic grocery bags that they can push through your house and they like to throw the bags into the air and catch them. Here is Two Bean Bags, My male Lop-Eared Bunny.

Two Bean Bags
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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by plants 'n pots on April 08, 2006 06:05 AM
I second the Sibleys guide - it is terrific!

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 - Lynne's knitting journal  -  -  -
"I'm spayed, declawed, and housebound - how's YOUR day going???"
by loz on April 08, 2006 07:41 AM
I just ordered these books last week, I think I'm going to get them tomorrow. [grin]

MIRACLE-GRO® INSTANT GARDENS
by Miracle-Gro®
Book Softcover

PROJECTS FOR THE BIRDER'S GARDEN
edited by Fern Marshall Bradley and the editors of Yankee magazine
Book Softcover

SIBLEY'S BIRDING BASICS
By David Allen Sibley
Book Softcover
by Starla in GA on April 08, 2006 09:58 AM
Thats so neat that you mention TSC! That is where we got our bunny at [Wink] The cage we bougth came with some food and such but I plan to go back and buy a big bag later. Thanks for the tip about the sunflower seed there. Good to know!

I was just reading the reviews for Sibley's field guide @ Amazon ($12-14 there) and also Peterson and Nation Geographic... Hmmmm I could really spend some $$$ there [Wink] LOL

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by mrsmessy on April 08, 2006 01:00 PM
My neighbor asked me to come over and ID a bird for her because everytime they pulled into the driveway this pretty little bird stuck it's head out of the bird house to watch them. I'm not sure how long this had been going on before they called me but by the time I got there the pretty little Tufted Titmouse appeared to have been dead for weeks because there was nothing left but his head resting on the opening to the house. They hadn't noticed that the bird hadn't moved in a while.

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Bev
by Thornius on April 08, 2006 02:02 PM
That's sad but still yet morbidly humorous. When I was a boy I was driving down the road and saw an old barn with a white chicken body about 20 feet off the ground hanging on the side. It was obvious that the chicken had flown head-first into a knot hole and strangled herself to death. It hung there for weeks until it finally disentegrated. We later moved to a house next to this farm and the farmer that owned the barn became like a third grandfather to me. When I asked him about the chicken he would get so tickled and said the chicken was trying to fly up on the roof of the barn and didn't quite make it. Her head went through a wide spot in the crack between two boards and she slid down the crack to the narrowest part which killed her instantly. They couldn't reach the body so had to let it hang there. Everyone that drove by there always commented on the chicken for years thereafter.

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by Starla in GA on April 09, 2006 10:02 AM
I made it to TSC today! YAY! I came home with 50lbs of BOS ... 20 lbs of nut 'n' berry and 5 lbs each of shelled Pnuts and cracked corn... oh AND another feeder [Smile] hehehehehe I'm sure hubby will understand that I neeeeeeeeeeeeeeeded it [tongue] [perplexed] LOL It's actually one of those with a lift up lid that is **suppossed** [dunno] [thumb] to service both birds AND squirels [lala] I guess we shall see how that works out LOL [Roll Eyes] perhaps if it does then they'll leave my *other* feeders alone (wishful thinking huh hehehe)

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by Starla in GA on April 09, 2006 10:20 AM
by Starla in GA on April 09, 2006 10:26 AM
And then here is an UNWELCOME visitor! My cat is DEclawed and suppossed to be a strictly INdoor cat! However she decided to sneak out and check out our back yard guest.

To bad I didnt get a shot of what she looked like once she had a rock thrown at her plus an 8 yr old child and a hiper dog running and screaming at her!

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by Thornius on April 09, 2006 12:10 PM
YOU FORGOT THE BUNNY FOOD! (and what you name the dear little lapine?)

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by plants 'n pots on April 09, 2006 10:48 PM
What a beautiful cat! Even if it WAS being naughty!!!

Is your cat deaf? I was told by a cousin who has an all white one, that they are all deaf.

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 - Lynne's knitting journal  -  -  -
"I'm spayed, declawed, and housebound - how's YOUR day going???"
by Starla in GA on April 10, 2006 07:29 AM
No my cat isn't deaf. The *story* is that a solid white cat with blue eye's is usually deaf. I have had 5 all white cats with blue eyes 2 of which WERE deaf. So the rule doesnt hold up for ALL cats. But they do seem more *prone* to being deaf.

Thornius ~ I didn't buy any bunny food this time because I still have plenty (and my total with all of my bird seed was already $$$ YIKES lol) so I skipped it this time.

We named the white bunny Dandy and the black bunny Midnight.... Sad news though Midnight has disappeared. She wouldnt come in last night so she stayed in dd's play house like she has before however this time she disappeared... we found some ummm intestinal remains this am [tears] but it was already dried out like it had been there for days and there was no fur what so ever so I really dont think it belonged to midnight (dh does) and thats what I told dd. I told her that Midnight must have run away. [tears]

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by Pinkhorseofcourse on April 19, 2006 04:04 PM
I want squirrels too! They are so fun to watch!! What do I need to do to get them to come?? Are they more winter time 'pets' or will they hang out in summer too?? [flower]
by SpringFever on April 19, 2006 08:51 PM
I don't feed the squirrels but I have a million!
They rest or slow down in the winter here,but you still see them playing and searching for food in the snow. cute to watch. they do love sunflower seeds.. I have had better luck with chipmunks being more friendly,they will come right up and eat out of your hand

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Tonight I am having friends for dinner... Hanibal Lector My Album
by Starla in GA on April 19, 2006 09:47 PM
The squirrels have come out in force since I put out Black Oil Sunflower seeds! [kitty] They even chewed through my plastic feeder to get to it [Mad] ! I purchased a squirrel friendly feeder to house the BOS and cracked corn to see if maybe they'd leave the other feeders alone [thinker] but no [Mad] they'd still rather go after the other ones [dunno]

They are fun to watch though! [clappy]

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~*~Starla~*~
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Pictures of: My back yard "garden" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107756626&idx=0
Pictures of :My back yard "visitors" http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2107551253
My water garden in progress http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id=2106370269
by Thornius on April 20, 2006 01:26 AM
I finally have A squirrel coming to my feedrs after 4 years of none. It is fairly well behaved and I believe is setting up a nest somewhere in or around my yard. It occassionally knocks one of my feeders down but mainly forages for BOS on the ground below the feeders. Here it is:

FEEDER SQUIRREL
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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by Pinkhorseofcourse on April 20, 2006 04:24 AM
So, if I put out a squirrel feeder with BOS, they will come? I only have one big tree near my house. Could I put feeders on my deck or on fence posts? [flower]
by Thornius on April 20, 2006 04:32 AM
If Squirrels come they will find your feeders wherever you put them. It took me 4 years to get my first squirrel but now I may live to regret it. [Big Grin]

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A bird in the hand......can sometimes be a mess.
by Pinkhorseofcourse on April 20, 2006 04:39 AM
I have seen the squirrel feeders that are basically a screw or nail on a block of wood that you put a whole ear of corn on... what do they like better, corn or BOS? [wavey]

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