Brush piles shelter wildlife from cold winter and hot summer weather and provide protection from predators and nesting cover. They are used by birds, small mammals and reptiles.
To create a brush pile, follow these steps:
- Select 8 or so straight untrimmed branches about 2 metres long.
- Arrange the branches in a teepee-like framework with butt ends anchored in the ground and tips interlocking. The idea is to create an internal space where occupants can perch safely off the ground.
- Pile evergreen boughs on the top and sides of this framework to form a cone. Boughs from discarded Christmas trees can be added.
- For further benefit, train climbing vines, such as Virginia creeper, scarlet runner beans, or honeysuckle onto the brush pile during the planting season.
- Each year, add a few new boughs. Leftover corn stalks will make a welcome addition to the brush pile in the fall.