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UK gardeners encouraged to take part in “No Mow May”

  • May 10, 2023
  • 2 min read
UK gardeners encouraged to take part in “No Mow May”

Scientists from the charity Plantlife are asking the public to look out for wildflowers and other plants in their lawns and put the lawnmower away as part of a campaign called “No Mow May.” The ten most common plants recorded during the campaign last were revealed as conservationists urge gardeners to let their grass grow for the month. These were daisies, creeping buttercup, yellow rattle, common bird’s-foot trefoil, field forget-me-not, meadow buttercup, white clover, common mouse-ear, oxeye daisy and dandelion.

Plant campaigners were delighted with the proliferation of yellow rattle on British lawns as the semi-parasitic plant possesses an ability to act as a ‘natural lawnmower,’ reducing coarser grasses and enabling more delicate wildflowers to flourish. The appearance of common bird’s-foot trefoil in a lawn means great news for other wildlife, being a rich source of food for over a hundred inspect species.

“Wild plants and fungi are the foundation of life and shape the world we live in,” Nicola Hutchinson, the director of conservation at Plantlife, said. “However, one in five British wildflowers is under threat and we need to urgently address and arrest the losses.

“With an estimated 23m gardens in the UK, how lawns are tended makes a huge difference to the prospects for wild plants and other wildlife. The simple action of taking the mower out of action for May can deliver big gains for nature, communities and the climate, so we are encouraging all to liberate lawns as never before.”

No Mow May, the charity says, could also help reduce the carbon footprint of British gardens. It estimates that British lawns can be cut as many as 30 million times a year under a weekly regime. This would be equal to the consumption of 45 million litres of petrol, causing 80,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions.

 

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