How to Make Your Own Bug Hotel

When bees and bugs get tired, they need a place to put all six of their feet up, lay some eggs and recharge their fuzzy little batteries.

How to Make Your Own Bug Hotel

With humans taking up a lot of the space bugs used to have to set up a home, people are beginning to make garden habitats for them instead.

While it’s good for bugs, it’s great for the yard, too. If you’re hospitable to bees and beneficial insects, they’ll repay you by pollinating your plants and leaving you with a lovely garden.

Not to mention, bug hotels make an eye-catching decoration you can hang from a tree or fence.

Cut the timber
Cut the timber
Sue Ferris

Mark and cut a 2400 x 115 x 18mm length of meranti timber into six equal pieces. Using a mitresaw, cut the ends of the timber pieces at 60°, making sure they measure 250mm from end to end.

Make the corners
Make the corners
Sue Ferris

Position two of the timber pieces on end on a piece of 7mm plywood to form a corner, and mark the outline in pencil.

Mark six corners on the ply. Cut out the corners using a jigsaw.

TIP Place timber 18mm-side down.

Assemble the frame
Assemble the frame
Sue Ferris

Join the mitred ends of meranti to form a hexagonal frame.

Position the ply corners inside the frame.

Secure the frame joints using exterior PVA adhesive and clamp the frame until the adhesive dries.

Secure the backing
Secure the backing
Sue Ferris

Position the frame on a piece of 3mm ply, trace the outline in pencil and cut out with a jigsaw.

Apply exterior PVA adhesive to the edges of the frame, position the ply backing on top and secure with nails.

Clamp until dry.

Reinforce the joints
Reinforce the joints
Sue Ferris

Cut six 10mm-thick splines to 60mm long from offcuts of meranti.

Use a tenon saw to cut 10mm housings at each external corner of the frame, securing the splines with exterior PVA adhesive.

Clamp until dry.

Trim and hang
Trim and hang
Sue Ferris

Trim the splines flush with the frame using a tenon saw.

Sand the frame and apply two coats of exterior paint.

Drill holes either side of a frame join with a spade bit.

To form a hanger, thread rope through the holes and knot the ends.

 
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