- Find out about different types of meadows, what the term “meadow” actually means and how important they are for biodiversity
- Create a piece of artwork or a craft inspired by a floodplain meadow and you could win a prize
They are the product of a traditional low-input farming system involving hay-cuts and grazing. They were documented throughout the country by the Domesday Book of 1086, when they were vital for providing hay as winter feed for animals. This traditional management resulted in the distinctive character of the meadows we see today
Over the past eighty years, there has been a widespread transformation in farming practices from traditional low-input management to more intensive agricultural systems involving inorganic fertilisers and a switch from hay to silage production. These changes have reduced the diversity of the countryside. The expansion of urban development has further contributed to the loss of habitat.
Wildflower meadows are one of the British countryside’s most glorious sights, filled with grass and flower species and providing a much-needed haven for wildlife. Dr Clare Lawson and Professor David Gowing explain how you can explore them further.Read now ❯Immerse yourself in wildflower meadows
Would you like to create your own meadow? Find out the steps required to make one and how you can maintain it.Read now ❯Make a meadow, whatever the scale and the diversity of meadows
As a society, we depend upon our countryside for food production, but also for many other environmental goods and services. These include recreation, enjoying the outdoors, regulating natural hazards such as floods, and mitigating climate change through carbon storage.Read now ❯What meadows do for us
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Haymaking is critical to our heritage meadows, but is later really better?
Meadows are not just about wildflowers, they’re also about hay as an agricultural crop. But they don’t make it like they used to. PhD student, Vicky Bowskill, explains how researching seasonal changes in the nutritional content of hay can help conserve the UK's precious species-rich floodplain meadows.Read now ❯Haymaking is critical to our heritage meadows, but is later really better?
Climate crisis is one of the grand challenges we face as a society, but it can be hard to approach as a subject. Not only can the science at times seem dauntingly complex, but the solutions are also far from clear. This leaves many people feeling confused, guilty, anxious, angry, or else completely switched off from the subject. This course tells the story of climate science in a new way, to find a fresh perspective for thinking about the future. It looks at the problem through the lens of climate engineering - the idea of deliberately trying to modify the climate, to counteract the changes we’re observing and predict what will happen in the future. The subject contains everything from hope – new technologies that could prevent the worst impacts of climate change – to enormous controversies over their risks and the way they could be used. More than that, climate engineering serves as a useful tool to move beyond the usual, often frustrating conversations around what to do about the climate crisis. By examining exactly what we want for our planet's climate, and what we would be willing to sacrifice to get there, we might find more clarity in our search for solutions.Learn more ❯Could we control our climate?