Get Involved with Give it a Grow
What you can do

Help to make Wigan a beautiful environment

There are many ways you can bring some wild into your neighbourhood, and help encourage greater biodiversity. Our campaign focus is on the urban environments within Wigan Borough, your streets, parks, and gardens. We want people to feel empowered to make a change, it’s much easier than you think.

Get Involved!

Volunteer with us

We’re only a small, but very passionate team so far. If you want to meet us and come out planting, helping residents, sowing seeds, or litter picking, we’d love the company.

Just get in touch

 

Suggest an area that needs help

Almost any spare patch of grass could have a wild corner. If you have any idea, we want to know! Please tell us where you think could be improved.

If there is also an area of high litter that you would like a hand to tackle, please let us know or you can via Wigan Council – My Account then Report It.

Make a pledge

We’re asking Wiganers from all over the borough to make a pledge and endeavour to boost biodiversity in their area. 

The pledge is open to residents, as well as landowners. This area can be a big or small as you want. 

Make your pledge here

Donate

If you can’t volunteer but would like to help, we have set up a donation page towards the cost of seeds, plants and containers to distribute. Your donation will really help our efforts across the borough

Sow wildflower seeds

Private gardens are the most abundant type of managed greenspace in Wigan – so you can make a significant impact right on your doorstep. They have the potential to be priority habitats in the borough.

To get started on your bee-friendly patch, you can ask us for a mini pack of seeds, and they are RHS Plants for Pollinators approved and are native to Britain. Our free pack will cover 2m2. 

If you would like to support a well known environmental charity, you can apply for a bee saver kit by donating £5 to Friends of the Earth.

You can also purchase beebombs, which include some mud, so they are speedy to throw down over grass or difficult areas, and the clay soil can help them thrive better. 

You don’t need to be an expert gardener to start a mini meadow of your own. 

Litter pick your area

If you’re getting fed up (like we are!) of all the rubbish blowing around, you can contact Wigan council for free litter pickers and equipment to do it safely, including gloves, pickers and bags. 

If you let them know what your plans are, by reporting it, or emailing Streetscene, they can also remove the waste afterwards. We would also love to hear about your plans and can often pitch in.

Stop using chemicals

Glyphosate is a hazardous chemical present in many major weed killer products, including Round-Up. It is approved for EU use, but the long-term data of its effects are unknown and it has the potential to spread throughout soil and water when used so heavily and degrade it.  

There are options that don’t include this ingredient. If the area isn’t too bad, instead, you can use washing up liquid, vinegar and water. Spray on a hot day. Adding a layer of mulch over the top of large areas will also work. Alternatively, manual weeding also works.

You may also find if you rewild parts of your garden, that it becomes less necessary to get rid of weeds anyway. 

I’m really hoping I don’t need to say this, but also don’t use pesticides in your garden, they are not choosy and will kill most anything, even in tiny doses! They are never selective.

Pollinator-friendly plants

Wildflower seeds are great if you have an area to sow. But if you don’t, there are also plenty of plants that are bee-friendly that you can add to your garden.

If you are struggling for ground space, you don’t need earth; a pollinator plant in a good size pot will still make a difference. 

Or if you’re able to, pull up a flag or 2 to create space – there are plenty of bare yards with potential for planting into the ground. 

When in a garden centre, you will often see the Bee symbol and ‘RHS Plants for Pollinators‘ on plant labels to help guide you on good choices for wildlife.

If you’d like to learn more and get plants for your garden, please see this list for a comprehensive list of RHS approved bee-friendly plants. 

We also have lots of blog posts to help you with planting, wildlife gardening and ideas for your garden.

Bird and bat boxes, bug hotels

With less tree cover and more concrete around Wigan’s urban centres (as is typical of urban spaces with increased development) bats, bees, bugs and birds have less natural habitats. 

Introducing a box in your garden could give a home to a few creatures, and help to get an ecosystem going in your own green space. 

Solitary bees in particular can make great use of these hotels, and really need them! 

Consider your lawn

Lawns are generally quite large areas with not much biodiversity and not a lot of different plant species present. If you don’t walk on or use the lawn heavily, there are many options to add more life.

Different ideas for a grass area could be a tapestry lawn, or wildflower lawn, or an edible lawn, with raised beds for fruits and vegetables.

You don’t need to remove the whole lawn if you don’t want to! But often, there is a section that is less used.

Artificial lawns are notably devoid of life as they are plastic and usually have concrete beneath them.

These large paved / concrete areas also contribute to flooding, as they increase surface water run off.

If you have an artificial lawn and can’t spare the expense to remove it, you could consider placing planters or pots with plants for pollinators.

These tips are just a few starting ideas. If you’d like to learn more or read about some of these in-depth, we have lots more ideas and tips for your garden on our blog,our active facebook page and friendly facebook community group also have plenty of ideas and discussions about what you can do at home to improve your green space.  

Give it a Grow

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Benefits

Volunteer

Free seeds

Your feedback

Please get in touch

This is a collaborative project – we want your feedback. If you have ideas about any of the things we’ve touch on, please get in touch. 

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We'll be posting regular news and tips on our facebook page and instagram to help empower residents to really make a difference in their area.

Get In touch

We welcome advice and feedback, but you can also get in touch to offer your support and help. You can also request some free seeds!