We are pleased to announce the launch of Nature on Your Doorstep!
Nature on Your Doorstep is designed to help you turn your garden, balcony, or windowsill into a haven for you and your local wildlife – whether you’re a gardening newbie or a green-fingered aficionado.
It has a series of 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 four of the ten ‘Wildlife Action’ articles and how-to videos from Adrian Thomas, our 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 can also 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 countries, 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.
Nature on Your Doorstep, 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 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. In 2020 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.
The importance of the outdoors to our own health is reflected by the Mental Health Foundation choosing ‘Nature’ for the theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week (running from 10-16 May) in recognition of how nature helped people through the pandemic.
Adrian Thomas, the RSPB’s wildlife gardening expert, said: “Our local wildlife has been an incredible source of comfort over the past year of isolation and uncertainty, and we’re so thrilled to see people wanting to help nature in return. With Nature on Your Doorstep we want to provide a place for everyone to learn from each other, ask questions, and be inspired to do more.
“Gardens can provide a crucial lifeline for struggling species - familiar birds such as the house sparrow have seen their numbers halve in the last 40 years, while 28 species of urban butterflies are down 69% in three decades. But seven out of eight households in Britain have a garden, and that is a huge patchwork of potential homes for nature. To that hungry butterfly, or that weather-beaten bird looking for a place to roost, just one garden can make all the difference. If we all work together to transform our gardens, we can truly revive our world.”
David Thomas, chief executive of Barratt Developments, said: “Through our partnership with the RSPB we want to empower people to give nature a home, by creating an online community for them to learn and to share their experiences, giving them digital tools which they can then take into the garden to get their hands dirty. This is all about helping homeowners to turn their garden into havens for wildlife.”
The RSPB and Barratt Developments have been working together since 2014 to show how new homes can help nature and support wildlife. Their support has allowed the RSPB to breathe new life into its wildlife-friendly gardening work through the creation of Nature on Your Doorstep.
To turn your patch into paradise for you and your wildlife, please visit Nature on Your Doorstep!
Last Updated: Wednesday 12 May 2021