Questionnaire results revealed
30 July 2012
In a survey carried out on the RHS website more than two thirds (68 percent) of those responding said they used their garden to watch wildlife. However, only 9 percent realised that plants help to reduce urban temperatures.
In general those who responded to the questionnaire were environmentally aware. 66 per cent had compost bins, over half (53%) had water butts and 55 per cent had developed wildlife areas. But take-up of green roofs, even if it is only planting sedum on the garden shed roof, is still very low with only 2 percent of respondents having one.
'With more than 600 replies to our survey this is a useful snap-shot of what is happening environmentally in the garden,' says Leigh Hunt, RHS Principle Horticultural Advisor. 'But we need to do more work. For example only 10 percent of respondents saw the prevention of flooding as a main benefit of gardens. We have got to get the environmental message out to more people.'
When asked nearly three quarters said they would be less likely to pave over parts or all of their garden if they knew it helped prevent localised flooding. A further 76 percent would be more likely to plant a tree if it could help keep their garden cooler on hot, sunny days.
Curiously nearly twice as many people said that they spent 7 to 10 hours a week gardening than those who relaxed in their garden.
The survey was carried out at rhs.org.uk/urbangreening in Jun-Sept 2011 and was published in July 2012.