Wildlife magnets

Keeping park-side gardens free of unwanted visitors is a constant struggle

There is a dark side to living close to parks when you have a garden: wildlife. Park animals will always prefer your tasty seeds and expensive perennials over the slim pickings in the park.

“I have a severe squirrel problem here … they are digging up the seeds I keep replanting,” said my friend Jeannine Oakes. I laughed, but should have been more sympathetic.

Deer are also a frequent nuisance for many people that live near parks, but there are ways to stop them from feasting on your garden.

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Shelter from the storm

Avid gardeners should consider elevation, climate and soil before buying a new home

As many Albertans know, we can get some really nasty hail storms. Years ago, when we lived in Airdrie, my kids got pelted by golf-ball-sized hail walking back from school. They survived, but my garden wasn’t as lucky; the hail had stripped leaves off trees and pummeled my native orchids into the dirt. After nine years in Airdrie, it was the final straw. We listed the house and moved back to Calgary.

Thankfully, garden enthusiasts can now look up factors that impact their garden, such as elevation, before buying a house. Other factors that affect a garden, like soil and microclimate, can be changed, but elevation is fixed. If you are a gardener looking to buy or sell in a satellite community, here are some gardening tips to consider:

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