A successful garden thrives when a healthy ecosystem, teeming with diverse life, is integrated into the gardening process. While it may be relatively common knowledge that the introduction of certain insects can help protect and propagate your plants, one frequently overlooked garden guest is frogs.
Whitman Organics is here to tell you all about these little amphibians and the role they play as vital members of your garden. We will discuss their benefits as well as how to attract them – which may be easier than you’d think!
What are the benefits of having frogs and toads in your garden?
You may not think so, but there are actually a number of benefits for your garden when some frog inhabitants are present. Below we’ve outlined two major roles these amphibians play in the small ecosystem that unfolds in your garden.
First and foremost, frogs are a great means of protecting plants and crops from unwanted pests. Both frogs and toads rely heavily on insects as their primary source of food, eating a large number of bugs that may be eating away at your garden, or even limiting the presence of annoying pests like flies and mosquitoes that impact your daily life as well. Overall, frogs are basically your golden ticket to the best form of natural pest control.
In addition to protecting you and your plants, frogs add a layer of environmental diversity that is critical in most landscapes. The more we urbanize the surrounding areas, the more uninhabitable the land becomes for a number of creatures who used to inhabit the space. The introduction of frogs and toads secures an integral piece of the ecosystem that not only creates diversity, but also fortifies the food chain.
5 ways to attract frogs and toads to live in your garden
Now that we understand how frogs benefit your garden and the surrounding environment, let’s focus on how to attract them in the event that they are not present or easily found. Below are key components for increasing your chances of inviting these creatures to your property.
1. Build a pond or other body of water
Although frogs do not live their lives constantly submerged in water, having a garden pond or nearby water source is going to be a necessary aspect of creating a welcoming environment for them to thrive. Frogs not only need easy access to fresh water to survive, but they also need water to lay their eggs and reproduce. Without a consistent and reliable water source, frogs and their small frog eggs are going to be less likely to make an appearance.
2. Provide the frogs shelter from the elements
The unforgiving heat of a hot summer day can be lethal to your frog friends. Frogs tend to thrive best in warm, damp environments as their permeable skin works to keep them consistently hydrated.
Using leaves, twigs, moss, and other natural materials from native plants to erect some sort of frog house not only protects them from the elements, but also provides a way for them to hide from predators. Consider filling a clay pot with twigs and moss, placing it near your plants or vegetable garden to act as a small shelter.
3. Don’t use chemicals in your garden
Chemicals such as pesticides and herbicides can be detrimental to the health and wellbeing of both frogs and any other animals trying to reside in the surrounding areas. Unfortunately, frogs are sensitive to the introduction of even the slightest amounts of chemicals, so in order to ensure the cultivation of a safe environment, opt for natural gardening products.
4. Keep predators away from your garden
When it comes to predators, birds rank pretty high on the list for frogs. In order to avoid potential threats, try to move bird feeders or bird baths to a different location in order to provide a safe location for frogs to inhabit. This goes back to point #2 – shelter from the elements doubles as shelter from potential predators, too!
5. Make sure they have food to eat
The basic principle is this: frogs eat insects. Ensuring your garden is amply supplied with insects will mean that frogs will be interested in migrating there in search of a reliable food source. As such, it’s important to avoid pesticides and allow nature to run its course.
For other gardening tips, check out Whitwam Organics’s blog!
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