This May why not take part in Plantlife’s No Mow May project? How you ask? It’s simple! Lock up your lawn mower and throw away the key (for a month) in order to increase the number of pollinators visiting your garden during May. If anything, it’s a great excuse not to have to do the mowing!
Plantlife discovered from their research of previous years that lawns which were mown every four weeks produce substantially more flowers and nectar sugar, as short plants (eg. clover and daisies) are given a chance to produce flowers, thus increasing the production of nectar tenfold! Of course, the longer you can leave the growth the more chance for pollinations and an increase in plant population and therefore production of nectar sugar.
After the month of no mowing is up, join participants all over the country in the nationwide Every Flower Counts survey over the May bank holiday weekend, and not only help Plantlife research the health of wild flowers in the UK, but also get your very own ‘nectar score’ which will let you know how many bees your lawn can feed! Enter your findings and find out more on the website here.
Last year’s Every Flower Counts survey revealed that 80% of lawns supported the equivalent of approximately 400 bees per day on nectar sugar from weeds such as selfheal, dandelions and clover, whilst 20% of lawns (called ‘superlawns’) were supporting a whopping 4000 bees per day!
You may be wondering why the No Mow May project is so important. The answer is that bee population is in a steep decline. Bees (and other pollinators such as butterflies and insects) are vital in pollinating plants and trees which filter our air, crops to put food on our kitchen tables, and provide habitats for wildlife. Without pollinators there would be no trees, and with no trees there would be very few animals on earth. It is amazing to think that such small creatures are so important to sustaining a vibrant and healthy world!
Unfortunately, due to habitat loss from an increase in urban environments, extreme weather conditions due to climate change, and pesticides from farming, the population of pollinators has dropped dramatically, and some even face extinction. No Mow May is a great way to get involved in the conservation of the little creatures, and to raise awareness of the issue. To help even more, you could even provide shelters for pollinators like the Driftwood Insect / Bee Hotel which you can find on our website!
Many organisations such as The National Trust and city councils are getting involved with No Mow May, and you can too! There are just 3 easy steps:
- Lock away your mower from 1st until 31st May
- Over the May bank holiday, join the Every Flower Counts survey (See video below for instructions)
- Enter your results on the website here and find out your personal Nectar Score!
Don’t forget to spread the word, and try and get as many people as possible involved in saving our pollinators this May!