Texas Gardening forum: How do you attract beneficial birds?

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Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
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TexasPlumeria87
Mar 27, 2013 4:12 PM CST
The past two years I've been having a problem with grasshoppers. They always eat up most of my plants and seedlings in Summer. I was wondering if there is any way to attract birds to eat them? I'm also curious about other ways to control grasshoppers. Thanks Thumbs up
Name: Sam aka 'Rosie'
Post Oaks of Colorado Co. (Zone 8b)
Region: Texas
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WRRanch
Mar 27, 2013 6:55 PM CST
Mockingbirds are great for this. We have numerous breeding pairs that nest in our 'yard' & we sit on the porch & watch them hunt. We have one that we thought was neurotic, but it was a method of scaring them up that we have never observed before... it would take a few steps & extend its wings to cast a larger shadow to scare them up. Good to see that it is back again this year.

Chickens & Guineas are also very good at keeping grasshoppers under control.
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
Region: Canadian Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Tip Photographer Garden Ideas: Master Level I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member
Morning Glories Critters Allowed Birds Houseplants Butterflies Garden Photography
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mcash70
Mar 27, 2013 7:55 PM CST
Cameron, one of the best ways to attract birds to your yard is with a water fountain or bird bath. nodding
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Salvias Herbs Bluebonnets Native Plants and Wildflowers Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Forum moderator Purslane Hummingbirder Cat Lover Butterflies Birds
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LindaTX8
Mar 27, 2013 9:02 PM CST
Some ideas here:
http://www.motherearthnews.com/Organic-Gardening/Grasshopper...
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 28, 2013 5:15 AM CST
Thanks everyone for the ideas. I have a few Mockingbirds in my yard this year, I also see a lot of Mourning doves in my yard. I forgot about a bird bath lol Thumbs up Linda, thanks so much for the link, I learned a lot and I'm going to try a few of those tips. I've heard of Nolo, but I didn't know it effected mantids and crickets. I did some research and I found out its illegal to have chickens here, otherwise I would love to raise a couple of chickens.
[Last edited by TexasPlumeria87 - Mar 28, 2013 5:16 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #380851 (5)
Name: Arif Masud
Alpha Centauri (Zone 9a)
Native Plants and Wildflowers I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Container Gardener Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Enjoys or suffers hot summers Multi-Region Gardener
KAMasud
Mar 28, 2013 9:44 AM CST
Linda, Margaret I tip my hat to you. . Cameron, pretty interesting corner of the world never visited it seems. I think I will hang around a bit longer.
Regards,
Arif.
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 28, 2013 12:55 PM CST
Hey Arif, glad to see you here. I tip my hat to you. I'm hoping the grasshopper population will be small this year. They're really irritating pest Hilarious!
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
Region: Canadian Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Tip Photographer Garden Ideas: Master Level I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member
Morning Glories Critters Allowed Birds Houseplants Butterflies Garden Photography
Image
mcash70
Mar 28, 2013 1:22 PM CST
Arif, I visit lots of forums, I like to see the different birds, flowers, plants, meet nice people. Smiling

By the way Arif, I now have threads on Blue Gardens Cubit, where I post my photos. Green Grin!

http://cubits.org/bluegardens/thread/view/73483/

http://cubits.org/bluegardens/thread/view/73569/

http://cubits.org/bluegardens/thread/view/73607/



Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Mar 28, 2013 1:24 PM CST

Moderator

An old Hill Country rancher swears by flour to control grasshoppers. He says when you first see signs of little white bugs jumping ahead of your lawnmower (or walking in the grass) it's time to apply flour. He prefers self-rising, but I would assume any flour would do. Make sure the lawn is damp and the wind isn't blowing too hard. In about two weeks, you'll have to do it again to kill the new hatchlings.

No, I haven't tried it. If my neighbors don't also do it at the same time, the grasshoppers just fly over the fences. I have little wrens that work very hard to keep my garden free of too many pests.
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 28, 2013 6:23 PM CST
Thanks Sandi, I'll definitely try that this year. I didn't know flour could do that. I haven't noticed any white bugs when I'm mowing, but I'll take a closer look the next time I mow. Thumbs up
Name: Arif Masud
Alpha Centauri (Zone 9a)
Native Plants and Wildflowers I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Container Gardener Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Enjoys or suffers hot summers Multi-Region Gardener
KAMasud
Mar 28, 2013 8:30 PM CST
Margaret, Sharon gave the links two weeks back and just now I am in a phase of reading all the backdated posts. Without reading the past posts I will not understand the thread. I like the style of Larry Smiling most but the rest also are good. A different generation though and all seem sedate and laid back while I recognize very few.
I would love to visit all the threads but the dozen or so open on my homepage keep me occupied plus I have to have the time available. Sharon is also working hard and somehow I am getting converted to her view point. No empty headed banter allowed, no empty headed conversation allowed, no wandering in dark and dingy lanes and by-lanes allowed. One very persuasive lady I tip my hat to you. . She went and found a female pup to keep her company. They temperamentally seem to get along well.
Cameron, stick around this forum. The knowledge and friendly advise you will get here suits your area and you also.
He is twenty five years old and is busy in setting up a new virgin garden and needs help.
Regards,
Arif.
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
Region: Canadian Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Tip Photographer Garden Ideas: Master Level I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member
Morning Glories Critters Allowed Birds Houseplants Butterflies Garden Photography
Image
mcash70
Mar 28, 2013 10:48 PM CST
Arif. I tip my hat to you.
Name: Arif Masud
Alpha Centauri (Zone 9a)
Native Plants and Wildflowers I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Container Gardener Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Enjoys or suffers hot summers Multi-Region Gardener
KAMasud
Mar 29, 2013 12:03 AM CST
I tip my hat to you.
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 29, 2013 5:20 AM CST
I really appreciate everyone's advice and great tips. Smiling
Name: Arif Masud
Alpha Centauri (Zone 9a)
Native Plants and Wildflowers I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Container Gardener Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Enjoys or suffers hot summers Multi-Region Gardener
KAMasud
Mar 29, 2013 12:49 PM CST
Yes but for them to give you tips you will have to orient them with your garden. Photographs would help then you will have to give details like your house is rectangular single story structure. The long sides are oriented North, South and the main garden is to the North in a strip ? by ?. One third is full sun, one third partial sun and one third is shade. The soil composition is heavy clay and you have a few trees(Cedars) that drip resin and don't allow anything else to grow underneath. Your South side bakes and you would like a few trees to cool it down.
You know stories like that. Now I am going to unwatch this thread, you be the standard bearer. Your garden thread is still on my watch list Thumbs up . Best of luck.
Regards,
Arif.
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 29, 2013 3:22 PM CST
Thanks for summing up my garden Arif. Thumbs up I'll keep everyone updated on my garden progress and my pest problems.
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Mar 30, 2013 4:37 PM CST

Moderator

Purple Martins love to eat mosquitoes!!!

We were at an Easter party this afternoon. I wanted to get a photo of some purple martins that roost at my friend's home. She has dozens of neighbors who volunteer to care for these birds. They've even set up a web cam this year. The lot is next to her home and is usually the parking lot for parties up there. Today it was for the little ones' Easter Egg hunt.

I only got a partial view of all the martin houses. You can see downtown Austin in the background!

Thumb of 2013-03-30/Bubbles/7b42c0

And this is it with all the little rug rats running loose!

Thumb of 2013-03-30/Bubbles/b0a04c
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 30, 2013 5:01 PM CST
Your friend has a beautiful yard Sandi, and a lot of the purple martin houses. I've seen those at Lowes. Did you get any rain in your area? It rained quite a bit here, and my plants look so much better lol.
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
Image
Bubbles
Mar 30, 2013 5:12 PM CST

Moderator

No rain for us, but I'm glad it didn't rain on the party. We may get some this evening. I took quite a few photos of the garden. I'm trying to decide how to post them since they aren't my garden. I did post some of the staghorn ferns she has on the Tropical forum.
Name: Cameron Allen
Plano, TX (Zone 8a)
Winter Sowing Birds Annuals Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Foliage Fan
Houseplants Xeriscape Orchids Clematis Salvias Seed Starter
Image
TexasPlumeria87
Mar 30, 2013 5:38 PM CST
I hope you get some rain tonight. I think we may see more tonight through Wednesday. I'll check out the Tropical forum. I had a staghorn fern a few years ago, but I killed it. I've never had any luck with ferns.

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