This Spring has been particularly beautiful with Spring flowers in abundance. We had Snowdrops everywhere, but particularly under the Lime tree in the Community Garden. These were followed by Crocuses galore, especially on the aptly named Crocus Hill. The bank behind Parkfield House also had plenty of Crocuses, and it is now covered mainly in Daffodils. There are Wild Daffodils along the Victorian Path, the Community Garden is sporting Primroses, and there are Celandines everywhere. In a few weeks the wilder parts of the park will be full of Bluebells.
We were very fortunate to receive some willow whips from Fairfield, and a group of us have woven them into a Willow Teepee. Only five minutes after we finished a group of children explored the teepee and posed for a photo.
We have freezing conditions followed by a fall of snow and children have been out playing with the snow. The park looks lovely in the snow too.
WE have worked hard over the past few years to make a better environment for pollinators, particularly in the Community Garden - have a look at the map at "What's In The Park?" if you are not sure where that is. This lovely Comma Butterfly seen yesterday in The Community Garden is proof that our efforts are worthwhile.
Six volunteers met for this Saturday's Work Party (that's the maximum number we are allowed under Covid-19 regulations). They cleared a lot of brambles from the bank by the croquet lawn. They also cleared brambles, willow herb etc on the bank down by the Victorian steps. Hopefully that will keep these invasive plants under control and give the spring bulbs and primroses etc a chance to grow well and flower next Spring
They also cut back a laurel bush on the path that goes south from the croquet lawn. This path gets very muddy in wet weather, so if we keep the bushy growth cut back it makes the path wider and easier to use when it is muddy.
They also sowed some wildflower seeds on the rough patch next to Parkfield's car park and in the grass in the Community Garden.
Altogether a very useful afternoon's work!
We had a very good session in the Community Garden this morning. Lots of strimming & clearing - nettles, tough grass, brambles, etc. We are very grateful to the Park Rangers, Olivia and David, who did a lot of work with us.
We also planted a new apple tree, a gift from Tom & Caroline.|
Today our good friend and tree expert David Redmore came and cut up the fallen Plum Tree and removed it from the path. We are waiting for the Council's Tree Gang to remove the remains for us. Some of the branches have been cut up to make a refuge for frogs and toads near the mini-ponds in the Community Garden.
The good news is that David said that in his view the plum tree had fallen across the path, and someone had attempted to clear it using a bow saw, but had found it to be too big a job and abandoned it. That feels a lot better than thinking someone had cut the tree down maliciously!
Sadly a lot of informal pathways have been trodden around the Community Garden by people attempting to bypass the fallen tree, so they will take a while to recover.
We have found out today that someone has cut down a Plum tree in the Community Garden without discussion or permission. It was a mature Plum tree and had quite a lot of green plums on it. In a few weeks the plums would have been ripe and giving pleasure to anyone who took the time to pick some.
Was it diseased or dangerous? No
Was it blocking the route through the Community Garden? No,
This attack on a healthy and productive tree appears to have been a wanton act of vandalism, carried out by someone with a power saw. Who would want to do such a thing?
Can you help us to track down those responsible? Were you in the Community Garden in the last fe days, and did you see the cut down tree, or was it intact when you passed through? It was a karge tree and it completely blocked the paths through the Community Garden until the Council Tree Gang removed it for us around 1.00 pm today (Thursday).
And of course if you have any information on who may be responsible please report it to the police on 101 quoting log number PE01062072JBBLH.
This beautiful brimstone butterfly was feeding on knapweed and thistles in the park this afternoon. The caterpillars feed on alder buckthorn, of which we have two specimens in the Community Garden.
The Friends are now allowed to hold Work Parties in the Park, although we are restricted to no more than 6 volunteers at a time, and of course we have to follow the Govt's rules!
On Saturday 6 volunteers went to work in the Community Garden to make up for some of the neglect of recent months. They were assisted by David, a Park Ranger from the Council, who came armed with a strimmer, which he used to clear paths through the Community Garden. He also cleared a lot of tall weedy growth, and trimmed the Ground Elder to stop it from from shedding its seeds. The strimming revealed a frog near the mini ponds, which fortunately managed to avoid being decapitated.
Meanwhile the Friends cut the heads off dock, pulled up thistles, cleared patches of bramble, did a tidy by the pub access road, cleared around the fruit trees and cleared the slope behind the pollinator patch.
What an excellent afternoon's work!