Gardens for Wildlife

HCC Gardens for Wildlife logo Gardens for Wildlife (G4W) supports people to create homes for native wildlife in their gardens. From a few pots to a little patch of plants or the whole yard, there is a wildlife-friendly garden recipe for you to follow to provide the food, water and shelter that animals need. 

By attracting native butterflies, bees, birds, frogs and lizards to your garden, it will become even more beautiful, vibrant and interesting. You are also doing your part to help your local biodiversity.

The Hume City Council G4W program is officially launching on Saturday 5 June 2021 for World Environment Day.

Subscribe to Live Green news to stay informed about the program and register for upcoming events and workshops below.

 

G4W is free to participate and open to all households, schools and businesses within the Hume City Council municipality.

A pair of friendly Garden Guides will visit with you in your garden, chatting for about an hour. They will talk with you about what wildlife you would like to attract and the things you could do in your space. Every patch of wildlife habitat is important whether it’s a few pots, part of a small courtyard, the whole garden, or even your nature-strip.

You will receive a report prepared by the Garden Guides with the information you’re interested in. We are confident you will be inspired to create wildlife habitat, but there is no obligation to take any further action. You will also be given copies of the Birds of Hume(PDF, 4MB) and Fauna of Hume(PDF, 905KB) field guides to begin to discover the amazing biodiversity in the City.

You can attend webinars, workshops and events to develop your habitat garden plans and learn more about our native wildlife. Come along to a community planting to get some free indigenous seedlings or join Hume City’s Wildlife iNaturalist project as a citizen scientist by submitting photos of what’s living in your neighbourhood.

Hume City Council gratefully acknowledges the assistance of Gardens for Wildlife Victoria network and the founding program Knox Gardens for Wildlife.

Garden visits by trained volunteer Garden Guides will commence in winter 2021. To stay informed, sign up to Live Green news or submit your contact details using the interactive Organise a Garden Visit brochure(PDF, 860KB) .  

When the G4W program commences you will be able to express your interest in organising a garden visit using Council’s online SmartyGrants system.

The number of garden visits that can be provided depends on the number of volunteers who are available. A limited number of Expressions of Interest (EOI) will be accepted in each SmartyGrants round. You will be notified that your EOI has been received. 

A Garden Guide will contact you to arrange and confirm your garden visit as they progress through the participant list. Please be patient as this may take some time. All garden visits will be conducted before the next round of EOI are opened.

Garden visits can be scheduled any day of the week, in the morning or afternoon.

Garden Guides are community volunteers who are formally screened and trained by Council. It is safe to have them come to your home, school or business. 

 

Are you interested in nature, gardening or helping other people? Are you happy to talk about the birds and bees … and butterflies, frogs and other critters? Can you do a minimum of ten garden visits per year? If so, then consider becoming a volunteer Garden Guide. 

In this volunteer role, you will:

  • Organise garden visits with participants and do a safety check with them over the phone.
  • Do some online research and save some maps to prepare for the visit.
  • Either take the lead and do most of the chatting during the one-hour visit, or help capture the visit by taking notes and photos with the participant’s permission.
  • Help prepare a report for the participant providing the information they need. Use a report template to insert photos, quotes, maps and relevant factsheets, with some of your recommendations or words of encouragement.
  • Help promote the Gardens for Wildlife program.

Even if you think you don’t know enough about native plants and animals, you will receive training and be provided with the required resources. There is also a buddy mentoring system where experienced Garden Guides will show you how it’s done.

Council encourages people of all backgrounds and ethnicities to become Garden Guides so that we can more effectively spread the wildlife gardening message to the culturally diverse communities that add to the City’s rich social character.

Volunteer Garden Guide application, induction and training stages will occur throughout the year. To stay informed about volunteer information and intake sessions, contact gardensforwildlife@hume.vic.gov.au.

Community education is required to dispel urban myths about Aussie critters, as well as raise awareness about the negative impact that some of our behaviours can have on native wildlife. Let’s be inclusive in communicating the simple actions and solutions to help wildlife instead.

Community and Friends groups deserve much recognition for their dedication in caring for our open green spaces. All across the landscape, habitat patches and wildlife corridors are needed through people’s gardens and streetscapes linking our parks, nature reserves and waterways.

Conserving our natural heritage also helps protect Aboriginal cultural heritage and shows respect for the first people’s ongoing connection to country. Many wildlife habitat plants are also valued by the local tribes that make up the Kulin Nations for the plants’ traditional uses. Planting food, fibre or medicine plants in your garden is a small yet powerful act of reconciliation. It deepens your connection to your place. 

If you have questions about the G4W program please contact Council’s Urban Biodiversity Officer on 9205 2466 or gardensforwildlife@hume.vic.gov.au