The National Trust has released a new book that encourages people to notice nature on their doorstep.
Every Day Nature includes 365 entries that offer readers inspiration on how to engage with nature and wildlife on their doorstep every day of the year.
As the nation becomes accustomed to spending more time indoors, the book focuses on the rich array that can be seen outside window, in a garden, park, hedgerow or roadside verge.
Andy Beer, author and National Trust nature expert, is passionate about nature and helping others to feel connected to the natural world around them. His book takes readers on a day-by-day journey through the seasons describing what to look and listen out for – from daisies in gardens and cow parsley along verges to the laughing call of a green woodpecker and the clouds above us.
He says: “Noticing nature can really help lift our spirits. I find a daily dose of nature to be essential for my wellbeing. Actively noticing and taking delight in things can be a great antidote and I would love for others to share in that feeling, which is why I decided to write the book.
“You don’t have to be an expert, know the correct names, have special equipment or, more importantly at this time, you don’t have to travel. Every Day Nature is about finding the joy in what is around you – wherever that may be.”
Andy’s observations for today are all about garlic mustard. He says:
“Jack-by-the-hedge is one of the definitive April flowers. It lives up to its name, favouring hedge banks, verges and shady spots. The plants can grow really tall and they have nettle-like leaves. It lights up a spring lane with clusters of four-petalled flowers that give way to long, thin seeds, which are an important food for birds.
“If you pick one and crush it you will get a distinct hit of garlic.”
Having a better connection to nature, is associated with lower levels of depression and anxiety. A recent study carried out by the National Trust and the University of Derby found that nature connectedness and simple everyday acts of noticing nature are linked with higher wellbeing.
The research also found the more people notice nature, the more likely they are to help protect it.
To buy a copy of the book visit www.pavilionbooks.com/book/everyday-nature/