In the same way as it's important to keep your birdfeeders clean and hygienic, it's also important to regularly maintain your Green&Blue BirdBath.
Why should I clean my Green&Blue BirdBath?
Whilst looking after the wildlife in your garden is a satisfying way to help the planet, it's important that this is done in a way that causes no risk to species. Clean water from a hygienic source protects against the spread of diseases, and also is less appealing to species like mosquitos and gnats which none of want to increase in our gardens. A regular cleaning routine can also prevent a build up of algae and dirt which can end up staining your BirdBath permanently.
When should I clean my BirdBath?
We recommend that you clean your Green&Blue Birdbath at least once a week, if not more often. You will soon find a schedule that works for you, with lots of factors affecting how regularly you clean, such as the colours of leaves that fall into the BirdBath, the quality of your water, the weather and the number of birds using the bath. It's worth giving it a quick brush and once over whenever you top up the water levels, with a deeper clean once a week.
How should I clean my Green&Blue BirdBath?
Most articles on maintaining and cleaning your BirdBaths will recommend a watered down bleach solution to clean your BirdBath. At Green&Blue we try and avoid the use of chemicals and so would recommend a more natural cleaning solution. We recommend a mix of one part white vinegar to eight parts water.
Empty all dirty water from your Birdbath and remove any debris with your hands, a hose or a scrubbing brush. Ensure the dirty water is emptied somewhere where it can't puddle and still be used by opportunistic garden birds!
The Green&Blue BirdBath has been designed so that you can remove the top dish to clean with relative ease, leaving the rings in place. The top dish weighs approximately 25kg which is heavy but manageable to move and clean!
Pop your cleaning solution into the BirdBath and use a scrubbing brush to thoroughly scrub the bath all over - this should remove any stains and restore your bath to it's former glory.
Please note that over time the appearance of your BirdBath will change. Concrete changes as the natural material weathers and it will lose some of it's crispness, but will become even more beautiful.
Rinse the BirdBath thoroughly with clean water, no bird wants a bath smelling like a chip shop after all!
Give the BirdBath time to thoroughly dry, ideally in the natural sunlight. This should remove any residual odour of the vinegar solution.
Refill, and enjoy!
How to maintain your BirdBath between cleans.
There are a few steps that you can take to ensure that your BirdBath doesn't get too dirty, or too stained.
Think about positioning, if you place the BirdBath underneath a strong coloured plant or tree then there's a chance that the leaves could stain the concrete. Concrete is an open pore material and so can take on environmental stains.
Each time you refill the BirdBath give it a quick rinse and remove any debris and dirt from inside. Or each time you pass make a habit of removing any leaves or debris.
When refilling the BirdBath always clear the old water first rather than topping up levels.
Place the BirdBath in a position away from BirdFeeders to stop spilled food landing in there.
Place the BirdBath in a position where pets won't use it as a drinking station or children as a water play area!
Choose a position with plenty of shade which should slow down any risk of algae growth and also the evaporation of the water.
This may sound like plenty of hard work and indeed there is a commitment of time involved in looking after our wildlife, but we hope you'll agree that the benefits far outweigh the work, and once you watch the birds scuttling back in for a quick wash you'll soon forget the time spent scrubbing!
Can I use bleach to clean a BirdBath?
Most websites will tell you that you can use bleach to clean a BirdBath so it would be fine, we just like to advocate a more natural way of looking after your bath. We have had reports that a solution of Milton will work very well and if you have stubborn stains that you are struggling to remove it may be worth trying this, however just ensure that you are very careful to rinse thoroughly and to allow to fully dry in natural air before refilling.
Will my BirdBath change appearance over time?
Yes. Concrete is a natural and open pore material so over time it will change slightly in appearance.
Is the BirdBath heavy?
Yes! The Green&Blue BirdBath is heavy, but not unmanageable! The rings weigh approx 30kg and the top dish approx 26kg, but you will only need to manoeuvre the top dish for cleaning.
If you're still thinking about buying a Green&Blue BirdBath and thinking about where to put it in your garden then check out our blog on where to put your BirdBath here.