It’s easy to get enthused about wildlife and flowers: from cute lamb pics to close ups of beautiful blooms, the loveliness is obvious. However, it’s also easy to take nature for granted. Here are a few things that deserve more appreciation.
Broadly speaking, without soil, there is no food. It can crumble and erode or help hold back floods. It is literally the ground beneath us yet many of us take it for granted.
Increased use of soil damaging chemicals, plastic contamination and a lot more besides are affecting soil quality. Don’t take it for granted.
Avoid using plastic, to minimise the amount that ends up in landfill; reuse plastic you can’t recycle, whether for gardening, crafting or storing food; and treat the soil in your garden well. It will reward you with a happiness boost: research has found microbes in soil can enhance mood. And of course, the better your soil, the more you can grow.
It’s equally easy to take water for granted but the effort that goes into making water come out of a tap shouldn’t be undervalued.
Don’t leave the tap running while cleaning your teeth, or waste it on daily baths – opt for showers instead. A brick in your toilet cistern will save water too, design allowing.
A rain butt can remove the need to use tap water on the garden, and you can also reuse water from any baths you have (or collect it when you’re showering) as long as it’s not too full of detergent or salt. You can make water collecters for the garden from recycled plastic bottles too – just attach the end of another bottle, opening to opening, to create a spout (shape the top half to look like flower petals and paint with water resistant paint to turn these into a feature).
Known as the lungs of the earth, trees can provide food, shelter, homes for wildlife and clean the air while they’re at it. Ancient woodland can tell many stories, as well as housing lots of wildlife (and plantlife); and forest bathing is coming into vogue as a way of relaxing. However, we’re chopping down too many trees and few people appreciate how much trees do for us. Find out more about how you can appreciate and help trees on the Woodland Trust website.