Keen gardeners out there may well have noticed a decline in insect numbers in their backyards over the last few years, with research papers showing that we could well now be facing an insect armageddon if we’re not careful.

Last year, a study carried out by Radboud University in the Netherlands found that the number of flying insects has dropped by three-quarters in the last 25 years, the Guardian reported at the time.

The cause of this is as yet unknown, although it’s thought that the prevalent use of pesticides and the destruction of wild habitats, as well as climate change, may be the most likely factors.

So what can gardeners do to help boost the insect numbers in their local areal? First of all, you should stop using pesticides and don’t spray any chemicals whatsoever in your outdoor spaces, instead relying on natural predators to keep insect numbers under control.

Consider your planting as well, as this can really help to attract certain species and ensure their survival. Native plants are a good choice, while wild ones can also prove particularly useful for supporting insect numbers.

Supporting pollinators like bees is also essential and the Royal Horticultural Society has some good tips to help gardeners get their planting right. Look out for pollen and nectar-rich plants, for example, make sure there’s access to water and provide nest sites for bees.

You can make your own or buy nests for solitary bees, with some choosing to nest in hollow stems like bamboo canes.

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