Sowing wildflowers on roundabouts and verges in urban areas helps reverse declines in bumblebee numbers, a study has found.
A 50-fold increase in bumblebees was recorded on unused plots of grassland after they were sown with wildflowers. The number of hoverflies increased 13-fold.
The study from Sussex and Stirling Universities, published in the journal Insect Diversity & Conservation, looked at 30 patches of wildflowers sown in urban areas in Central Scotland.
Professor Dave Goulson, the study’s senior author, said bumblebees were threatened by intesnive farming practices such as exposure to pesticides.
He added: "It's wonderful to see how effective this approach is. The flowers are beautiful, much more attractive then the regularly mown grass they replaced and less trouble to look after."