A new guide published today by the RSPB and Barratt Developments, which is currently building brand-new communities across Devon, shows how to turn balconies and small gardens into sanctuaries for wildlife.
The RSPB's ‘Welcome Wildlife into Your World' guide gives top tips and advice for bringing nature to your home, especially for people with a small amount of outdoor space such as a balcony or courtyard.
The leading housebuilder is building new homes at Tarka Ridge near Barnstaple, Embden Grange, Tavistock, Braid Park, Tiverton (from Barratt Homes and David Wilson Homes) and Lucerne Fields, Ivybridge. Many of these developments have been given RSPB awards for their wildlife friendly show home gardens.
From growing wildlife-friendly plants in small spaces, to feeding birds, providing water, giving a home to bees, and sign-posting what wildlife to look out for, you can discover simple things to do that are great for wildlife and for people.
This year has been unlike any other, and while lockdown has brought few benefits it has served to give many people a renewed appreciation of nature. This guide shows how everyone can make a difference, however big or small their outdoor space is.
Adrian Thomas, RSPB's resident gardening expert, said: "During lockdown many of us were reminded of how big a role nature plays in our own health, both physical and mental. With this guide you can be inspired to bring that nature to your own home - a balcony can be turned into a second home for pollinators with just a few climbing plants, some potted herbs and a shallow saucer of water. Even if you only have a window the local birds will be sure to visit a well-placed window feeder.
"More than 40% of UK wildlife has declined in the past 50 years, but by taking these kinds of small actions you can help give wildlife a home. By welcoming nature into your space, however big or small, you can give it a boost, and let it do the same for you in return. What better way to brighten your day than hearing birdsong or by enjoying flowers in bloom!"
Nicki Reid, sales director for Barratt David Wilson Homes Exeter, said: "This is a great guide for helping nature no matter what outside space you have and it shows just what can be achieved even on a balcony. We try to give nature a home on all our developments and this guide will help more people to do just that. This year of all years, when we are all appreciating nature so much more, it's great that people with balconies can turn them into a haven for nature."
For further information or to download the guide, please visit https://www.rspb.org.uk/barratt-developments or www.barratthomes.co.uk/campaigns/giving-nature-a-barratt-home/
Since 2014 Barratt Developments PLC and the RSPB have been working together to show how new homes and communities can help nature and support wildlife. This has included sharing our knowledge and expertise to develop an innovative brick for swifts to nest in, creating landscape guides, and establishing accredited wildlife-friendly show gardens at our sites across Devon. We're also working together to develop resources that support communities to help nature thrive; in their gardens and balconies. Read more about our partnership at https://www.rspb.org.uk/barratt-developments