How to Create a Bird-Friendly Garden

As natural habitats continue to diminish, people have begun creating bird-friendly gardens in their own backyards to serve as crucial havens for various avian species. This trend benefits humans as much as it helps nature, since watching and listening to birds has been shown to reduce stress and promote a sense of well-being. Moreover, birds play a critical role in our gardens, from pollinating plants to controlling pests, thus maintaining the delicate balance of our local ecosystems. In this article, we explore how you can transform your yard into a thriving ecosystem for birds!

How do you create a bird-friendly garden? 

By understanding what birds need.

Birds search for three fundamental elements in their habitats: water, shelter, and food. 

These essentials sustain them through the changing seasons, and aid in their survival and reproductive success. Follow the four steps in this article to create your own bird-friendly garden sanctuary.

1. Install a Bird-Friendly Bird Bath in your Garden

Juliet Concrete Birdbath by Campania

The sculpted birds perched on the edge of the Juliet Birdbath by Campania may help give local bird life a sense of security to stop by and bathe.


Water is the pulse of any bird-friendly garden. The splash of a bird bath offers both refreshment and a place for birds to preen. Fountainful recognizes that gardens come in all shapes and sizes and offers a selection of bird baths to fit every yard. 

  • For sprawling lawns, Fountainful’s tiered water features like the Fonthill 3-Tier Concrete Fountain can become a centerpiece that caters to an entire flock's needs. The sound of cascading water can also be heard by birds from a distance and signifies a reliable water source. 

There are a few considerations when introducing a bath into a bird-friendly garden:

  • Shallow Edges: Birds prefer areas where the water is shallow and they can wade in without risk.
  • Clean and Fresh Water: Birdbaths need to have their water kept clean and fresh to prevent the spread of disease. 
  • Safe Location: The fountain or bath should be placed in an area that feels safe from predators, giving birds a clear view of their surroundings.
  • Perching Spots: Adding stones or branches where birds can perch and assess their environment before entering the water can encourage them to use a bath.
  • Avoid Deep Water: If a tiered fountain has areas of deep water, it could be hazardous to smaller birds that might not be able to get out easily. Having rocks or pebbles where birds can stand will make it more accessible.

2. Choose Ornithologically Correct Birdhouses

Chickadee Hanging Birdhouse in Cedar by Winter Woodworks

The Chickadee Hanging Birdhouse by Winter Woodworks is ornithogolically correct for North American Chickadees, including an entrance hole and nesting box size engineered precisely to the species' preferences. 

Fountainful offers a variety of bird houses that feature entrance holes and nesting spaces with exact dimensions to accommodate various avian preferences. For instance, the
Bluebird House is designed with a 2.25-inch entrance while the Chickadee Hanging Birdhouse offers a 1-⅛ inch entrance ideal for smaller birds. We also offer the Wren Hanging Birdhouse for tiny species like the North American Wren.

Including a range of species-specific birdhouses significantly increases the chances of hosting a diverse bird population in your garden.

Bird-Friendly Guidelines for Mounting Bird Houses

All of the cedar wood birdhouses in our collection, like the Bluebird Nesting Box, include detailed mounting guidance for optimal species attraction.


When installing bird houses, proper placement is crucial for the safety and comfort of your feathered guests. Bird houses should be securely mounted away from predators and human disturbances, with a clear entry path. It’s important to position them in a way that avoids direct sunlight to prevent overheating and to slightly tilt them forward to keep the interior dry from rainwater. 

We provide specialized mounting guidance for every birding product we sell to cater to species preferences. This strategic placement helps ensure that your garden will be bird-friendly and diverse.

3. Install a Variety of Bird Feeders

Conservationists generally support bird feeding, especially during harsh winters, or when natural food sources are limited due to habitat loss. However, they also emphasize responsible feeding practices to ensure that the benefits to birds are maximized while minimizing potential problems. Here are some key points that conservationists often highlight about feeding birds:

  • Use the Right Feed: It's important to provide appropriate types of food that meet the nutritional needs of different birds. Suet feeders, seed feeders, and oriole feeders each cater to different dietary preferences.
  • Maintain Clean Feeders: Regular cleaning of bird feeders is crucial to prevent the spread of disease.
  • Prevent Dependency: While feeding can help birds, it's also important to ensure they do not become overly dependent on artificial food sources. Encouraging natural foraging behavior by also providing food sources from native plants is important.

Fountainful’s Bird-Friendly Feeders

Suet Feeder in Cedar by Winter Woodworks

    The Suet 2-Cake Hanging Bird Feeder features a tail-prop platform for secure perching and a two-sided feeding station to accommodate multiple birds. It champions an eco-friendly build, shunning potentially harmful glues for traditional screws and staples, while its unvarnished cedar surface naturally deters parasites. It is designed to hold suet cakes—a high-energy blend of fats, seeds, and sometimes insects—ideal for woodpeckers, nuthatches, and titmice.

    Stenciled Hanging Birdfeeder in Cedar by Winter Woodworks

      The Stenciled Hanging Bird Feeder features charming stenciled nuthatches and see-through panels for easy seed-level monitoring. It's built to endure the elements and resist rot, while the cedar's natural properties help deter parasites. It has the capacity to hold two pounds of seed.

      Oriole Feeder in Cedar by Winter Woodworks

        The Oriole Hanging Bird Feeder is built with western red cedar, stenciled with non-toxic paint, and designed to accommodate multiple birds at once. It features wooden dowels for orange slices and a ramekin for fruit bits, jelly, or homemade nectar, to provide the carbohydrates and fuel that sweet-toothed Orioles require for their migratory journeys.

        4. Select Native Bird-Friendly Garden Plants

        Jaipur Concrete Planter by Campania

        With a 2-feet diameter and clocking in at 176 lbs. the Jaipur Concrete Planter provides abundant space for bird-friendly arrangements of flowers, foliage, and even small shrubs.


        Native plants are not only adapted to your local climate but also provide the natural diet local birds hare accustomed to. Consider planting a mixture of native trees, shrubs, and flowering plants in your bird-friendly garden that will produce a bounty of insects, berries, nectar, and seeds. For example, oaks and maples can host a variety of caterpillars, while berry-producing shrubs like spicebush offer nutritious fruits throughout different seasons. 

        You can find the best plants for your area (and where to get them) using Audubon’s Native Plants Database. Simply enter your zip code to receive a curated list of the best native plants paired with the bird species they are likely to attract. You can even organize the list by type of plant and the resources they provide to ensure optimal layering and species diversity.

        Bird-friendly Bushes that Offer Shelter and Nesting Materials

        Mesa Concrete Planter by Campania

        The Mesa Concrete Bowl Planter by Campania spans 2.5 feet in diameter, providing ample room to plant shrubs and other foliage to provide local birds with additional shelter options. 

        Beyond food, birds need shelter for protection and materials for nest-building.

        ➤ Dense shrubs and thicket-forming plants (like dogwoods and hollies in the Eastern U.S.) provide excellent cover and nesting sites.

        ➤ Grasses and perennials, such as milkweed and goldenrod, are also great for nesting material and will attract a variety of insects for birds to feed on.

        What can I put in my yard to attract birds?

        Pair plants native to your area with planters from Fountainful to create layers of vegetation, from ground covers to canopy trees. This stratification allows for different species to coexist by utilizing various levels of the garden for feeding and nesting.

        Below are a few planters suitable for various plant types and sizes:

        Additional Bird-Friendly Garden Ideas and Tips

        • Avoid the Use of Pesticides and Harmful Chemicals – Maintaining a bird-friendly garden means eliminating the use of pesticides and other chemicals that can be harmful to birds and other wildlife. Accept that some insects are an essential food source for birds!
        • Provide Supplementary Nesting Materials – To further encourage birds to nest in your garden, offer supplementary nesting materials like small twigs, dead leaves, and even pet hair in an accessible spot.
        • Importance of Educating Yourself About Local Bird Species – Understanding the specific needs of your local bird species is essential. Familiarize yourself with their habits, preferences, and the threats they face. This knowledge will inform your garden design and caretaking practices so your efforts are as effective as possible.

        How do I attract birds to my yard without trees?

        Install birdhouses, bird feeders, water sources, and native plants!

        At Fountainful, our mission is to help forge a connection between people and nature. Our proudly American-crafted water features and birding products invite you to cultivate your very own bird-friendly garden. 

        Visit our website at to browse our collection. We welcome you to call us at 214-901-7275 with any questions between the hours of 9am and 5pm CST Monday through Friday. Happy birding!

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