Blue tits sitting on tools | The RSPB

10 easy ways to help nature on your doorstep

Want to make the most of your outdoor space but don’t know where to start? Here’s our ten easy ways to help turn your space into a brilliant place to relax and enjoy that will also help wildlife too! And the best bit is you don’t have to do all ten to make a big difference.

Meet gardening expert Adrian Thomas

Our expert Adrian Thomas is here to help you turn your outdoor space into a brilliant place for relaxing or entertaining, while still doing your bit for wildlife. Whatever your gardening experience and whatever the size of your space, Adrian has the tips and tricks that will work for you.

Our new video series:

Over the next few weeks, Adrian will be sharing his new videos and know-how on each of our top ten ideas listed. So come back regularly to see the latest live articles. Better yet - sign up to our new monthly Nature on Your Doorstep email and get them straight to your in box.

RSPB Wildlife Gardening expert Adrian Thomas smiling while sitting on grass

1. Top seven easy to grow plants

Plants make a space beautiful, sensual and impressive. Whether in your garden, in pots or a window box, it’s an easy way to wow. Plus, by choosing the right plants you’re helping butterflies and bees too.

Purple foxgloves in the sunshine l RSPB

2. Just add water

You don’t need dancing water fountains... Water works a wonder whenever you add it. You’ll find buckets of ways to bring all kinds of wildlife to your patch from ponds to bird baths.

A Ruddy starter dragonfly rests on a stem

3. Love your logs and leaves

One of the easiest ways to look after your outdoor space is by giving bees and beetles a helping hand. That pile of old leaves or stick; bundle them together and leave them in a quiet corner. The pile will feed and shelter all sorts of wildlife and eventually make great soil for you. 

A large bug hotel featuring pine cones, holes for solitary bees and logs of various sizes

4. Food for your wild friends

Offer nature a free meal and you’ll see the difference. From shop bought peanuts to some rather handy homegrown goodies, you’ll get lots of happy visitors… and you won’t even have clean-up after your dinner guests.

A collared dove feeds from a translucent window feeder

5. Homes: the hole story

Location, location, location. Like us nature is looking for their perfect home. You can give them a helping hand; from bird boxes, to bug hotels, homes for hedgehogs, to frog and toad abodes; property development comes in all shapes and sizes.

A stack of logs, pinecones and hollow tubes

6. Pest control

Some wildlife is more welcome than others. Luckily, nature has some simple ways you can ditch the chemicals and still enjoy your precious blooms. Get the mix right for your nature pals and you’ll be on to a winning formula.

 

A snail chewing through a green leaf

7. Gardens without boundaries

Birds, bees, hedgehogs, frogs, butterflies; they like to mix things up a bit and move between gardens. Give them a hedgehog highway, a green wall or hedge. Make it easy for them, without upsetting your human neighbours.

 

A hedgehog emerges from a hole in a garden fence. A sign above reads Hedgehog Tunnel.

8. Gardening for humans

Your outdoor space must work for you. For entertaining and BBQs. For kids to play. Or for lazy, hazy summer days. But remember, it’s outdoors! Even the smallest space can still be perfect for both you and the nature on your doorstep.

Adults chat and serve food in a garden while two children jump on a trampoline

9. Connect with nature

After all that work, take time to stop and enjoy what nature can offer you. Pull up a seat, grab a cuppa, tune out the noise of modern life and tune into the relaxing sound of bird song.

COMING SOON

Adult European starling perched on a fence with leaves in its beak

10. Spread the word

Share your success on our new dedicated Nature on Your Doorstep community, give plants you’ve grown to friends and family, share photos or video of what you do on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, inspire people and help it become your new normal.

COMING SOON

Blue tit Cyanistes caeruleus, adult flying to nest box with caterpillars in beak
An aerial view of a residential area in England with homes, streets, cars and gardens visible

Why we need your help

UK gardens cover around 433,000 hectares (4,330 sq kms) of land. That’s about three times the size of Greater London! RSPB’s nature reserves cover just 2%. Now imagine all those gardens, back yards and balconies working together as one network for nature.

That’s why Barratt Developments is sponsoring the RSPB, the UKs largest nature conservation charity, to ask you to do your bit for birds, butterflies and bees.

Barratt Developments logo | The RSPB

Supporting communities to help nature thrive

Nature on Your Doorstep is sponsored by Barratt Developments PLC, who is supporting the RSPB to get gardens, balconies and other outdoor spaces blooming and buzzing with life. Read about our wider partnership and commitments to nature-friendly homes.

Wellies planted with flowers

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A blurred version Nature on your doorstep garden

33 wildlife garden ideas

Choose the perfect gardening activities for you and your outdoor space.