A shelter for wildlife: Benjes Hedge
By Deng Lehuai, Xing Fangyu

Why the hedge?

Urbanization and intensive modern farming have led to a decrease in land available for wildlife. Consequently, many wild animals and plants have lost their habitats.

The problem has been present in Germany since the 1950s, inspiring the Benjes brothers to come up with the idea of restoring natural habitats for wildlife. They pioneered the building of hedges, which have become known as Benjes Hedges, near meadows and pastures to provide a more natural living environment for garden animals. 

How is it built and how does it work?

The process starts with putting small trees on a mound of soil of 50 to 100 centimeters to form the core. Then the tree protection will provide a microclimate suitable for plants to grow.

Over time, the area will turn into a simple habitat to attract insects that feed on decaying woods. With insects and shields from the small trees, the hedges become an ideal place for birds to find food and nest.

The birds will carry more seeds home, helping the hedges to thrive on their own. Eventually, they will turn into a micro natural habitat.

As nature takes its course, the hedges become a shelter for more wildlife, especially in winter.

(Cover image designed by CGTN's Yin Yating, video filmed by Zhang Yi, edited by Deng Lehuai.)

(If you want to contribute and have specific expertise, please contact us at nature@cgtn.com)