Grasslands, meadows and verges

From hay meadows to road verges, grasslands require just one thing – cutting at the right time! OK, maybe ‘just one thing’ is an exaggeration but making sure you know when and how to cut your grasslands will bring enormous benefits.

Explore the numerous links below to find out how best to improve your grasslands for wildlife or create brand new meadows brimming with wildlife.

There’s also a special section on verges to help guide you and your community through the process of taking on management of our local roadside verges for the benefit of wildlife.

As always, before you start taking action, first get to understand the type and condition of the grasslands you have. Have a look at our Discover page to find out more about surveying and identification.

Moor Meadows is a fantastic community initiative whose members are interested in conserving, restoring and creating wildflower meadows, from a meadow in the garden to many acres in the landscape.  The initiative began on Dartmoor but is quickly spreading across the county.  If you at all interested in meadows please join them!

Road verges

Verges can have huge wildlife value and are often remnants of species rich unimproved grasslands.  We have approximately 2000 hectares of road verge across Devon (excluding verges managed by Highways England). If managed appropriately our verges (along with adjacent habitats such as hedges, trees and ditches) can provide interconnected wildlife corridors across the county supporting a wealth of wildlife including plants, bees, butterflies, bats and reptiles.

Devon County Council is responsible for the majority of road verges across Devon and, where safe to do so, is encouraging community groups to get involved in their management.  Find out more about their Life on the Verge initiative.