Increasing urbanization worldwide calls for more sustainable urban development. Simultaneously, the global biodiversity crisis accentuates the need of fostering biodiversity within cities. Policies supporting urban nature conservation need to understand people’s acceptance of biodiversity-friendly greenspace management. We surveyed more than 2,000 people in 19 European cities about their attitudes toward near-natural urban grassland management in public greenspaces, and related their responses to nine sociocultural parameters. Results reveal that people across Europe can support urban biodiversity, yet within the frames of a generally tidy appearance of public greenery. Younger people and those using greenspaces for a greater variety of activities were more likely to favor biodiversity-friendly greenspace management. Additionally, people who were aware of the meaning of biodiversity and those stating responsibility for biodiversity conservation particularly supported biodiversity-friendly greenspace management. Our results point at explicit measures like environmental education to increase public acceptance of policies that facilitate nature conservation within cities.