Allotments and gardens can be havens for wildlife, particularly within towns and cities. Froglife has been working with growers and gardeners across the city, showing people how they can improve their gardens and plots for wildlife. ‘Wildlife workshops’ are an interactive workshop for allotment holders. The workshops offer in-depth discussion, tips and practical skills on how to make urban allotments attractive for all sorts of wildlife, especially amphibians and reptiles.
The increasing fragmentation and degradation of habitat available for wildlife in London has led to a reduction in our Capital’s biodiversity. Allotments provide a much needed way for reptiles and amphibians and other wildlife to move around, and they also help to link up habitats. Many allotments have been around for years – some for more than a century. For amphibians and reptiles allotment’s act as a ‘historical safe-house’ providing a constant habitat for these animals even when the landscape around them has changed. Some gardeners still regard attracting wildlife to their plot as undesirable, but in fact there are many benefits in doing so, for example reptiles and amphibians will devour many insect pests. And encouraging wildlife into your allotment also provides an opportunity to be close to nature, and to do your bit to conserve British wildlife.
In the ‘Wildlife workshops’ Froglife show people how to enhance the wildlife value of their plot by making simple but effective changes to its design and management. The workshops are held at allotment sites with allotment holders across London, and run from spring through to early autumn. The sessions include:
- An introduction to wildlife friendly gardening, with free resources to get you started.
- The opportunity to learn some basic identification for amphibians and reptiles.
- Individual and group tasks to get you thinking about the steps you can take to improve your allotment for wildlife.
- Discussion and site walk – a chance to share your gardening triumphs, tribulations, successes and pitfalls, and get our advice.
Below are the sites we have already visited.