The Wildlife-Friendly Vegetable Gardener (2014, Storey Publishing) is in many ways a run-of-the-mill gardening book. Hartung explains the importance of soil, season and sunlight. But she spends equal – if not more – time exploring the relationships your veggies-to-be play in the local ecosystem.
No knowledge of ecology or prior-gardening experience is needed, either, as Hartung explores tactics for fostering a healthy relationship between the garden and local wildlife. From the benefit of small insects and pollinators to the diversion, replacement and repellent features of various plants, Hartung offers a full course on the subject.
Even as early as the introduction, she lays it out for readers:
“As you gain greater knowledge about how the natural world is actually influencing the garden (rather than what you assumed was happening), you can then use that greater knowledge to create an even more beneficial garden environment, both for the wildlife and for yourself. The outcome is likely to be much more appropriate and satisfying as well as more successful.”
Author Tammi does suggest leaving out leftovers for wildlife, near the garden or elsewhere, something that APFA recommends against. Learn more about through our Living With Wildlife campaign.