For Peat's Sake!

by Annie Sutcliffe

The time is fast approaching when we gardeners start to sow our first seeds of the season.  Can I implore you to think carefully about your choice of growing medium?   Many (indeed most) of the products on sale to the public are at least partly comprised of peat– an unsustainable source that is a disaster for the environment. Even if labelled “environmentally friendly” or “organic”, if it doesn’t say “peat-free” then it isn’t!   Peat is primarily sourced from lowland raised bogs – ...

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Make a splash for wildlife

by Annie Sutcliffe

Did you know that a pond can be the most significant wildlife feature in a garden or allotment?   The UK is losing its natural ponds and wetlands at an alarming rate, and domestic water features can make a real difference to the network of habitats available for our wildlife.   Even the smallest pond can make a difference and you will be amazed to see how quickly frogs, toads, newts and damsel- and dragonflies will find and colonise any new water. You may ...

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Praise for allotments and “weedy corners”!

by Annie Sutcliffe

Recent research, published in the journal "Nature Ecology and Evolution", which examined land use in cities, has identified pollinators’ favourite places and flowers. The results suggest that the best way to support a rich mix of pollinator species, resilient to climate change and other challenges, is to increase the number of allotments.  They are particularly good places for pollinators because they provide a mix of fruit and vegetable flowers, plus weedy corners full of native plants. Planting appropriate flowers in gardens also ...

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