NATURE ON YOUR DOORSTEP!

The RSPB has launched Nature on Your Doorstep, a project designed to inspire and advise everyone on how to turn their outdoor spaces into havens for wildlife – whether it be a garden, balcony, yard, or community green space.

This project, made possible by a three-year commitment from Barratt Developments, the UK’s largest housebuilder, comes after a year in lockdown caused many to rediscover and rejoice in their local nature. In 2020 alone over 1.7 million people sought advice from the RSPB website on how to make their garden more wildlife-friendly, and in January the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch saw a record-breaking one million people take part in counting the birds in their garden.

In a recent YouGov poll two thirds of people in the UK said nature was a source of solace during the pandemic, with more than half of those surveyed (51%) believing the pandemic has made them more aware of the nature around them. A recent study from Princeton University, USA, also found that gardening is one of the top five activities for increasing emotional well-being.

Visitors to Nature on Your Doorstep will be able to access:
• how-to gardening guides,
• easy step-by-step videos,
seasonal gardening advice, and
• an online community dedicated to bringing people together to ask questions, seek advice, and share their successes (and learning experiences!).

Already available are a range of the ten ‘Wildlife Action’ articles and how-to videos from Adrian Thomas, the RSPB’s wildlife gardening expert. The first two articles, for example, are titled ‘The best plants for wildlife’ and ‘Just add water’, and will talk people through how to find their green fingers (“Even great gardeners have plant failures!”) and the importance of water for wildlife (“It’s the magical ingredient that brings your outside space to life”). Visitors to the page will also be able to sign up to receive a monthly newsletter full of useful tips and tricks.

Over the next three years the project will continue to grow into a go-to place for gardening for wildlife. The project will host everything from customisable content to seasonal advice across the four nations, as well as conduct research into what drives or prevents people from welcoming wildlife to their outside spaces and investigate how to empower local communities to make shared spaces a home for wildlife.

To turn your patch into paradise for you and your wildlife, please go to: www.rspb.org.uk/get-involved/activities/nature-on-your-doorstep

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Tony Flanagan
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