From bird feeders to ponds, there are so many different ways to attract wildlife to your garden. But have you ever thought of building your own bug hotel? This outdoor activity provides hours of fun and is something that the kids can get involved in too. Follow our simple steps and, once you’re done, your bug hotel could provide a welcome retreat for a variety of different creatures including toads, hedgehogs, bees, woodlice and ladybirds.
What you’ll need
Gather together a mix of different objects that vary in size, texture and material. Most of the items can be foraged from your garden and around the home. Here’s a list of what we’ve used to create our bug hotel but you can always add some of your own natural materials into the mix:
Pallets Logs Foliage
Plastic tubing Pine cones Straw
Bricks Plastic plant pots Empty toilet roll tubes
Twigs Hessian Paving slabs
Bamboo Wooden boards
How to build
- Start by choosing where you’re going to build your new luxury hotel. We recommend finding a flat, stable surface that’s sheltered from any harsh elements including wind and rain.
- Lay some bricks on the ground at each corner to provide a nice, firm base.
- Lay two pallets on top of the bricks – these are perfect as they come with ready-made holes that your bugs are able to crawl in and out of.
- Finish with a smaller pallet on top so you’re able to build a slanted roof later that rainwater can run off.
- Now for the fun part! Stuff the gaps in the pallets with a mixture of different materials. If you drill a few holes in your logs before adding them to your hotel it’ll provide the perfect home for smaller insects such as beetles, woodlice and spiders. As well as this, the larger holes in bricks are perfect for frogs and toads to hang out in, and ladybirds love the straw.
- Next, add a roof using two sloping pieces of wood which you can also stuff more material into.
- Add the finishing touches to the top of your roof with a few more sturdy logs and plant pots to keep the hotel firmly in place for years to come.
Now all that’s left to do is find a comfy spot in your garden, sit back and wait for a variety of exciting wildlife to pay a visit to your newly built hotel.