Whether we like it or not, we share our gardens with a host of wildlife. In recent years, most of us have become increasingly aware of the role we play in making our plots as wildlife-friendly as possible − and even the smallest garden plays an important role.
There are over 23 million gardens in the UK. Together, the difference they can make to wildlife is enormous. Since World War Two wildlife has been increasingly challenged. The use of agricultural pesticides, herbicides and fungicides affects and very often destroys ecosystems and the wildlife within them. Wetlands have been drained, destroying one of our most important and unique habitats. Thousands of miles of hedgerow have been torn out to create ever bigger fields for ever larger machines to produce cheaper food for bigger profits, until it was realised that the erosion it caused was counter-productive. Some of those hedgerows have been replaced, but the fine balances that existed may take many years to re-establish. Our soil has been impoverished and woodlands have been razed to the ground to build roads.