In the last century, we have lost 97% of our wildflower meadows, drastically reducing the diversity in our natural habitats. But as a business you can impact this decline by revaluating your exterior grounds maintenance practices.
Wildflower meadows attract bees and butterflies, essential for the pollination of our food crops. They also provide a home for many insects, birds and animals including hedgehogs and bats. At an individual, community and corporate level we all have a responsibility to protect our planet to support a sustainable future. For companies with exterior grounds, one simple solution is to leave areas of grass to grow wild over the summer months.
While there is still a place for striped lawns and immaculate lawn edges if it fits with your corporate image, setting aside some areas of grass to grow wild will encourage more biodiversity on your premises. Some of our clients have strategically selected small areas of grass to attract pollinators, birds and animals in less visible areas, at the back of a building or along a fence line. Spots where there is less pedestrian or motor vehicle traffic are also preferable to encourage more wildlife and avoid disturbance.
Taking the initiative to encourage biodiversity on your site is an ideal opportunity to involve your employees and encourage similar activities in the wider community. The management team at Maxim Park have created a wildlife map to highlight the diversity of wildlife to be found on the grounds while some of our customers have set up cameras to capture footage of animals visiting the wildflower meadows on site.
At the end of the summer, when young have grown and wildlife has moved on, the area can be cut with a flail mower. This is normally done in sections and the grass left on the cut sections for a period of 1-2 weeks. This method is deployed, in case there are any animals lurking in the long grass. When machines start they are likely to be disturbed and seek refuge in another section or in the grass cuttings. The process of cutting in sections therefore minimises the threat to wildlife. After a few weeks the cuttings are lifted and recycled into compost.
Another obvious benefit of letting the grass grow can be a reduced cost for mowing during the summer months.
If you would like to discuss setting aside some areas on your site to create a wildflower meadow, get in touch with your GP Plantscape contract manager or give us a call on 0808 100 3120.
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