As a Peterborough resident I was alarmed to learn that valuable habitats for wildlife around the Eastfield Rd/Boongate roundabout are being replaced with grass.
Extensive shrubberies alongside the footpaths have now been removed.
I was informed by an on site officer that this is a plan for many roadside verges across Peterborough and that the reason for the change is to protect motorists and also pedestrians wishing to cross the road. Some of the shrubs are also 'too old' and must be removed.
Roadside shrubs can provide food and shelter for pollinating insects, other invertebrates and important habitats for nesting birds, acting as 'green corridors' for all manner of wildlife, including hedgehogs.
As an 'environment city' we should seek to provide more valuable habits for wildlife rather than depleting those existing. Good replacements for unsuitably large shrubs would be low maintenance, low growing, flowering and fruiting shrubs, see-through perennials, fruiting trees or rich grassland.
Many of the roadsides around Peterborough are notable for the size and effectiveness of the municipal planting, indeed, the council has clearly seen the value of these plantings in previous years. Let's not let this be a thing of the past.
The wildlife of Peterborough deserves sustainable, suitable planting, NOT whatever is easiest and cheapest.
Please join me in requesting that grass is not good enough!
Amanda Rigby, Senior Designer, The Garden, Journal of the Royal Horticultural Society