The Tŷ Hyll Wildlife Garden
Every Monday (weather permitting), a group of committed volunteers meet to work in the Tŷ Hyll (Ugly House) wildlife garden. Recent work includes putting up bird boxes and bat boxes.
The Society contributes to a number of wildlife gardening projects, including work in the garden and grounds of Ty Hyll.
Wildlife gardening can play a really important role in meeting the challenge of sustaining the variety of life which makes up the vital ecosystems on which we all rely. Currently, human activitity is decreasing the biodiversity of our ecosystems at an alarming rate.
If you would like to get involved with work in our wildlife garden, please contact the office. We'd love to have your help!
See Tŷ Hyll for more about this fascinating old house.
BRIEF HISTORY OF THE WILDLIFE GARDEN
When the Snowdonia Society bought Ty Hyll in 1987 the garden was largely an uncared-for wilderness of montbretia and raspberries.
Clearing and planting between 1987 and 2002 took place without any particular strategy.
In 2002 we decided to embark on a long-term programme of progressively clearing beds which had become choked with weeds and replacing shrubs and herbaceous plants that were in poor shape with new plants that are more beneficial to wildlife.
New plants have one or more of the following attributes:
a) nectar-rich to encourage a wider insect population
b) with seed heads or berries for birds
c) plants which span the seasons
Autumn 2002 - Spring 2003
During this time a large pond was constructed in the woodland (which you can see if you visit Ty Hyll) - it is surrounded by water mint, water forget-me-not, sweet grass, water crowfoot, etc.
A smaller pond was constructed in the garden. We also constructed three compost bins. Three large conifers were removed to allow more light into the garden.
An additional parking area for staff and volunteers was constructed with a native mixed hedge for screening (buckthorn, blackthorn, hawthorn, hazel, wild rose, beech and spindle). A nettle bed was provided for butterfly larvae and we began to plant wildflowers (primrose, celandine, foxglove, red campion, clover, etc.)
We continued the restoration of several old and overgrown beds, replanting with a variety of wildlife-friendly plants. Two leaking water butts were replaced following a hot and dry April. A number of trees were felled above the new car park as part of the project of removing non-native conifers.
It is important to stress that all the work in the garden has been done entirely through the help and good will of Snowdonia Society volunteers. We are hugely grrateful to them for their ongoing efforts. Their work includes: construction of sheds, compost bins and a log store; the building and planting of the two ponds; maintenance and planting of beds; construction and improvement of footpaths and the surfacing and planting of the new car park area.
All work is done following organic principles to help attract wildlife and enhance the National Park.
We hope that you will visit the gardens and woodlands around Ty Hyll and think about applying some of the simple steps towards achieving a more wildlife-friendly garden where you live!
If you would like to support the enhancement work we are doing here and elsewhere throughout Snowdonia, please consider becoming a member of the Society, making a donation - or even coming along on a Monday to help us with our wildlife garden!