Devon Wildlife Trust Large or small, lawn or courtyard, our gardens provide a patchwork of green spaces for wildlife. There are an estimated 16 million gardens in the UK and the way these are cared for can make a big difference to wildlife. 

  • Action for Insects Watching bees and butterflies in your garden can bring great joy, and all insects do important jobs such as pollinating our crops. But 41% of insects face extinction. To help insects thrive throughout the year we need to create spaces where they can live, and our gardens are a brilliant place to start! Our Action for Insects page contains lots of useful information to help you turn your home and garden into insect-friendly havens. 
  • Get your Garden Buzzing Gardens are vital for urban and suburban bees, with the right planting they can give a boost to early emerging bees and be hotspots for these insects throughout the year 
  • Help the Hog Let’s make Devon the most hedgehog friendly county. Help boost Devon’s hedgehog population by doing something to help hogs in your area and map your achievements here. We can make big differences in our gardens through doing simple things. There are 15 million gardens in the UK, covering about 270,000 hectares – more than the area of all the National Nature Reserves. Together they can make a crucial difference to hedgehogs. 
  • Welcome Birds to your Garden Many birds that were once common have seen declines over the past 50 years, reasons are varied and complicated but lack of food and nesting sites are thought to be contributing to the decline. Song thrushes, sparrows and starlings along with many other species are struggling to survive in the countryside but you can help in your garden by feeding the birds and providing nesting sites. 
  • Wildlife Ponds Ponds are guaranteed wildlife magnets, they will attract a great variety of wildlife including frogs, insects and birds. Here are our top tips, do's, don't's and guidance on creating a wildlife pond in your garden. 

Blue Tit in a tree in Rock Lane, Chulmleigh (Photo: Grant Sherman)


Exeter Wildlife Gardening Award invites you to add your garden to a growing patchwork of wild spaces across the city of Exeter. You will receive an award plaque to proudly display on your gate, wall or door, a certificate, and (whilst stocks last) a packet of wildflower seeds.

To attract wildlife to your garden you need to provide food, water and shelter. You may also need to manage your garden a little differently. 

Below are some options for providing each of these elements. To enter the scheme you will need to meet at least 6 of the options below, with at least one from each column.


  • Bird feeders and/or dog/cat food left for hedgehogs
  • Nectar rich flowers
  • Flowers, fruits & seeds available throughout the year
  • Shrubs and trees with nuts and berries
  • Wildflower meadow or nectar rich lawn of 2m2+


  • Wildlife pond (without fish)
  • Bog garden or permanently wet area
  • Bird bath
  • Water left out for hedgehogs and insects
  • Save water and use a rain butt


  • Plant creepers on vertical surfaces or trellis for nesting & feeding
  • At least one mature tree
  • Mixed native hedge
  • Dead wood log piles or big tree stumps
  • Bird, bat, hedgehog or bee/insect box


  • Leave perennials standing till spring
  • Compost garden and kitchen waste, go peat free
  • No slug pellets or pesticides
  • A long grass area or a few nettles left in a corner
  • Allow hedgehog access into your garden through a hole in the fence or gate 


Moor Meadows How to Create a Meadow in Your Garden

The easiest route – Put away the lawn mower!

Have you ever let your garden lawn grow from spring onwards?

If not, you could try leaving it uncut from the beginning of April for three weeks – you may be surprised to find you have a meadow in the making already (assuming it’s not been recently laid).

Many flowers that grow in meadows are likely to be in your lawn already. Species like Red and White Clover, Self Heal, Creeping Buttercup, Ground-ivy, Dandelions, Germander Speedwell are all rich sources of nectar and they are just waiting to flower – if you give them a chance and put the lawn mower away.

Put away any fertilisers or lawn improvers as well if you’ve been using them, they will only encourage the vigour of the grass to the detriment of your wildflowers.

Worried your meadow could look untidy? You don’t have to do the whole lawn if you don’t want, a meadow the size of a dining table will still provide good habitat but it should be in sunny spot. 


North Devon Biosphere Reserve - Pledge for Nature Over the coming years, with the help of our conservation partners, we will be promoting seasonal activities to tackle the most pressing problems. We need your help to make it happen! So we are inviting individuals, community groups, schools, businesses and particularly farmers to pledge to tackle priority issues for nature’s recovery. 


RSPB Your garden is a mini nature reserve! Learn how to make it a great home for wildlife. Whether you're planting for wildlife, creating a pond or need advice on chemical free pest control, the RSPB has got you covered. 


Wild about Gardens The Wildlife Trusts and the RHS set up Wild About Gardens to celebrate wildlife gardening and to encourage people to use their gardens to take action to help support nature. Many of our common garden visitors – including hedgehogs, house sparrows and starlings – are increasingly under threat. But together we can make a difference. This years' campaign draws inspiration from the dazzling new film, The Secret Garden, as it brings the magic of wildlife, childhood and gardening to life on Sky Cinema. 


Royal Horticultural Society From creating a pond, to building a wormery, see RHS expert advice on encouraging wildlife 

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