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garden for birds


The evergreen trees and berried shrubs in this low-maintenance planting attract birds by providing food, nesting sites and materials, and year-round cover.   Features like birdhouses, feeders or a birdbath may be easily added by a new group of students each year.

Active Learning
Use this Learning Habitat for studies in bird identification, bird behavior and seasonal change.

Suggested curriculum link: BirdSleuth  
A school curriculum and citizen science project of Cornell University's Lab of Ornithology, based on regular observation of backyard birds.


  • Hardy trees & shrubs, mulched for easy upkeep
  • Dustbath for birds
  • Fallen logs & boulders
  • Stepping stone path
  • Birdhouses and feeders

Download Garden For Birds DESIGN
Download Garden For Birds PLANT LIST

PLAN Before You Plant
Successful, sustainable school projects start by involving the school community in planning.

Share the Dream
Form a team of staff and parents to gather ideas, discuss possibilities and prioritize needs and goals.  How will the area be used to support curriculum?  How will you involve students to get information and make choices?

Survey the Site
Check with maintenance staff and others about its existing uses. Measure it.  Note growing conditions (light, soil, access to water).

Create a Design &Action Plan
Select features and create a design.  Develop a timetable to implement it.  It's great to start small and build on success over time.  Plan for ways students can use and add to the area in subsequent years.

Involve the Community
A plan with broad support, that many people have helped shape, is critical for long-term success.  Vandalism is less likely.  Enthusiasm for using it will grow, as well as support for its upkeep.