• Bird lists, boilers and bangs

    Tufted DuckLondon’s Hampstead Heath on a drizzly Saturday was buzzing with life: Coot, sparrowhawk, kestrel, cormorant, heron, shoveller, grebe, moorhen, mallard, starling, magpie, blackbird, tufted duck, parakeet, mute swan, black headed-gull, greater spotted woodpecker and lots of dogs!

    My day started well, in that I managed to stumble out of bed before the BBC London radio car arrived to interview me in my scrappy garden…

    • 29 Oct 2007
  • Fat chance for nature or take a chance on getting thin with nature

    We're fat and bureaucrats are to blame! That appeared to be the message from the Government report, Sleepwalking our way to obesity, stating we're heading for an early grave because of our sedentary lifestyles.

    Reading the report you'd think we are all incapable of controlling what we eat or how we exercise. Are we really under the thrall of out TV's, play stations, computers and motorised transport to the extent…

    • 19 Oct 2007
  • Window box, garden, farm or mountain range - it's all the same to wildlife.

    I could have sworn someone said that gardening for wildlife was a lazy form of gardening. Something about not needing to prune, cut grass and weed as often? Pity they missed out the backbreaking bit involved in creating the garden in the first place.

    I'm about eight-weeks into this project and six weeks overdue at the chiropractors. However. I am now the proud overseer of three raised vegetable beds (awaiting some manure…

    • 15 Oct 2007
  • Why did summer go so quickly? Was it something that you said..

    There's no denying it, here it comes again, round like a circle in a spiral. Leaves on the ground, craneflies clinging to walls and windows, apple's falling silently through space and an alarming rise in the number of calls to the office about squirrels. Autumn's here.

    Two weeks ago, I was enjoying a walk around Rainham Marshes, admiring the juicy blackberries, bursting with flavours of port and wine. Back…

    • 8 Oct 2007
  • Lessons from teenagers in making some noise

    Friday night, I was out on the town in Teddington at an environmental awards ceremony at the Landmark Arts Eco-Fair. A teenage conservationist stole the show. He'd been nominated for his work in the community and for growing organic food. As he accepted his certificate from the council for turning some land into a wildlife haven, he seized the moment to make a speech raising awareness of his campaign to save the grou…

    • 1 Oct 2007