Let your garden go wild to help bees and butterflies

I’ve always thought of my garden as rather messy, but actually, it’s pretty environmentally-friendly, with loads of daisies like this, for starters …


In response to alarming losses in insect numbers, Cornwall Council launched its Pollinator Action Plan in May 2019. The Plan came about as a recommendation by Full Council following the ‘Bees, Pollinators and Human Health’ motion in 2016.

One in every three mouthfuls of the food we eat depends on the pollination of crops by bees, butterflies, hoverflies and other insects, but these important pollinators are under threat; habitat loss, agricultural practices, pesticides and climate change have led to devastating losses of wildlife, both here in Cornwall and beyond.

While it’s sad not to see so many butterflies and bees buzzing about, these losses have a wider implication. Pollinators play an essential role in Cornwall’s ecology, and Cornwall’s ecology plays an essential role in the health of our communities, our workforce and our economy. While our treasured landscapes have already lost some of their life and colour, and agriculture and tourism have already been affected, Cornwall’s Pollinator Action Plan is starting to turn these losses around.

What individuals can do … 

These actions will help to reverse the decline in bees, butterflies and other insects by providing food and places of refuge for pollinators.


  1. Let native plants thrive in your garden – flowering ‘weeds’ are nature’s own supply of colour, refuge and food.
  2. Plant pollinator-friendly plants to boost food
  3. Avoid garden pesticides including aphid spray, slug pellets and weedkillers; and buy organic fruit and veg
  4. Leave areas of your garden undisturbed and naturally messy – make space for log piles, compost heaps and rough, grassy areas.
  5. Reduce the frequency of lawn mowing – let daisies, buttercups and clover come through and flower especially in early spring

Apply for funding for ideas for Environmental Growth.

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