RHS welcomes launch of the National Pollinator Strategy

A statement from the RHS on the latest government initiative to focus on bees and other pollinators

Bee on Nepeta racemosaThe RHS welcomes the National Pollinator Strategy: for bees and other pollinators in England and the Bees’ Needs campaign, as a significant step in both increasing our understanding of, and counteracting the pressures on bees and other pollinators.

For many years the RHS has understood and championed the vital role that gardens and gardeners play in supporting pollinators and other wildlife. That is why we developed the RHS Perfect for Pollinators initiative. Gardens and green spaces are recognised as important habitats in rural and urban areas. Gardens account for a quarter of land in towns and cities and they can provide a vital and valuable refuge for pollinators.

We are focused on raising awareness of the plight of pollinators and helping gardeners identify which plants and other gardening practices are best at supporting these important insects.

The inclusion of the RHS Perfect for Pollinators campaign in the strategy, and the report’s focus on the need to advise and encourage the public to plant a range of flowers and plants, underlines the crucial role that gardens, gardeners and the RHS is playing in supporting pollinators. Through RHS Britain in Bloom up to 300,000 people across the country are working to integrate plants into their local communities which can help towards providing additional food sources and habitat for pollinators.

As a member of the Pollinator Advisory Steering Group, the RHS has worked with Defra, and other concerned organisations, on the development of this strategy. We have represented UK gardeners and drawn on the world-leading expertise of our staff to help to ensure that the strategy sets us on a direction of travel that will increase our understanding of the plight of pollinators. We are pleased that a robust, evidence-based approach will guide us all as we tackle what is an incredibly important concern.

We look forward to working with Defra and the array of expert stakeholders, in the coming months and years, to arrest and reverse the decline of our pollinators. The RHS will continue to promote the value that gardening, gardeners and gardens have for these insects.

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The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.