The Wings of a Garden – Birds, Bats, Insects and Fairies

by Linda Wiggen Kraft

It is those things that fly that bring a special energy and magic to the garden. No garden is soil, sky and plants alone. Yet we often think only in those terms when we think about our garden.

A garden is a system of life, a web that sustains and nourishes not only our lives, but the life of the planet. Part of what sustains us is the wonder, joy and pleasure of having the winged creatures as part of our garden.

We need to invite more of the flying things into our gardens, and nourish those that are there already. We also need to acknowledge the full spectrum of life’s energies that sustain life in the physical form.

How to do this? Create a habitat that is similar to the wild ones that are being lost. Provide food, shelter and water. Native trees, shrubs and flowering perennials attract the most wildlife and provide the most food. Attract the insects first, because they will bring the birds and bats. We need insects to pollinate, keep the other insects that destroy plants in check and be the most nutritious food for birds and bats. Only 1% of insects are the ones that are problems for our gardens, the other 99% are the ones we need. Insects are the protein source birds need to feed their young, not seeds. The best way to get a deeper understanding of the importance of native plants and insects, and what plants to choose for the garden is to read the book Bringing Nature Home by Douglas Tallamy.

And what about the fairies? A fairy, or deva (the name given in Indian traditions) is the subtle energy life force that sustains the life of plants and other parts of the garden, from largest to smallest. Most often fairies are depicted as small winged creatures. Fairy gardens are usually thought to be only those with miniature plants and small figurines. But fairy gardens are not only the small ones, they are part of all gardens inhabiting the entire space.

Fairies are seen and known by some people. My favorite fairy book details the real life experience of a woman who went on to develop “Therapeutic Touch”. That book is The Real World of Fairies, A First Person Account by Dora Van Gelder Kunz. Another book tells the story of a tree grower, who during a near death experience, was lead by the devas of trees to start a global organization to save the genetics of all champion trees. It is titled The Man Who Planted Trees, Lost Groves, Champion Trees, and an Urgent Plan to Save the Planet by science writer Jim Robbins.

For most of us, fairies aren’t within our vision. But they can be within our hearts. What can a gardener do to enhance the fairy, and deva, life in the garden? How to nourish these subtle energy winged creatures? Connect through the heart. Just as other people and animals know if they are acknowledged and loved, subtle energy life force responds to thought and feeling. Look at the trees, shrubs, flowers, plants, insects, birds and feel a heart connection. Feel the energy of the seen and unseen garden creatures; the insects, bats, birds, fairies and devas, and let your heart expand to embrace their energy. Honor and thank all parts of the magical and miraculous garden for bringing nourishment to your body, mind and spirit.

Linda Wiggen Kraft is a landscape designer who creates gardens that honor the full spectrum of energetic and physical garden life. She is also a mandala artist. Her work can be seen at www.CreativityForTheSoul.com. She can be contacted at 314 504-4266.