I was putting some mulch under our white pine Sunday when I noticed that the robin who had been around our yard lately seemed to be hanging quite close to me. Soon, I discovered the reason why — a nestful of almost ready to fly baby robins. The parent robins built the nest in the crotch of the pine, which would provide some protection from predators and the considerable wind we have in the spring.
If you like birds, planting “shrubby” trees and bushes almost guarantees you will get nests. In the past, we’ve had nests in highbush cranberry, pagoda dogwood, ash trees and (unfortunately!) an air exchange pipe coming out of our house. (We had to evict those birds, I’m afraid.)
My most recent column in the St. Cloud Times describes the four things birds need, with a few tips on how gardeners can supply those needs. One of those needs is places to nest, such as a shrubby tree.