We are working to put in place measures to maintain and enhance biodiversity. Our work will encourage more resilient and coherent ecological networks and healthy and well-functioning ecosystems, with multiple benefits for both wildlife and people.

Image: Rudbeckia in the Kitchen Garden

More habitats for wildlife

We want to increase and improve habitats for wildlife. Introducing more boxes for bats and birds is one step we are taking. You will also notice that when we coppice our trees, to keep them safe and healthy, we leave the wood where it is to make log piles for insects, spiders, ladybirds and beetles. We are sowing more meadows in the Gardens (have a look in front of Chiswick House) and we are also reducing how often we cut the grass – longer grass provides good habitats for insects. We will be more actively managing our woodland by improving the diversity of species of trees to create more homes for birds and wildlife.

Organic growing

Our Kitchen Garden is 100% organic. We use biological controls rather than pesticides and herbicides to encourage more diverse species of plants and flowers to grow naturally, encouraging more insects, beetles and spiders into the Garden and increasing the number of residents at our bug hotel in the Kitchen Garden.

Reducing our carbon footprint

We want to reduce how much carbon we produce. All our work is carried out manually in the Kitchen Garden and we have introduced ‘no dig’ principles, as digging releases carbon. We re-use natural materials produced from coppicing our trees for fencing off areas, supports for vegetable growing and creation of ‘dead-hedge’ habitats. We compost all the waste we collect from gardening, grass cutting and coppicing to turn into compost, which we use for our plants. We have a bicycle we use in the gardens and all our vehicles are powered by electricity, but we still have some work to do with our petrol-powered garden tools and machines.

Less water

We want to reduce how much water we use. We have a grey water system that captures rainwater from the roofs of our buildings in our estates yard, which we use to water the plants. We will be introducing more water butts in the Kitchen Garden to water our fruit and vegetables. Planting in autumn also reduces the need to water and we are introducing more sustainable planting.

Award-winning Gardens

We will measure how well we are doing by continuing to achieve an annual Green Flag Award, which is a national standard for publicly accessible parks and green spaces in the UK and the highest award (Gold) annually from London in Bloom, which acknowledges management of natural resources.

We are also putting in place regular surveys to measure the impact on wildlife, insects and tree health.

Goosefoot Volunteers Photographer Yuko Susai

Support Us

Your support is vital to our future. Help us raise over £1 million each year to maintain and preserve Chiswick House and Gardens so that we can open to the public.

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Volunteer with us and use your time to help us preserve and maintain our beautiful grounds.

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