The past twelve months have seen a range of activities on parish council land.
Wild Flower Beds
Last summer, residents will have seen the new wild flower beds opposite the play park. The feedback on this initiative has been overwhelmingly positive, although we did get a surprise at the prevalence and height of the Cosmos. The beds were cut back in the late autumn and already you can see the perennial plants reappearing. A few poppies and corn marigolds are also peeping through now.
In light of this positive response, the parish council decided to do a few more beds on another Green this year – four beds have been seeded in front of Greenside with a lower-growing seed mix.
The Millennium Garden is currently having a makeover. Volunteers have planted some new hedging in a bare corner and some new shrubs have been planted in an enlarged bed at the back which has been covered in woodchips, recycled from a diseased ash tree in the field behind the cemetery. The hedging and shrubs have all been chosen to support wild life and are native plants.
The main garden area has just been re-seeded to create a wild flower meadow with a mix of 80% grass and 20% wild flowers. There will be a metre wide grass path all around the garden and, once the meadow has grown, a further path or paths will be cut through it.
If you are looking round, don’t forget to check out the wildflower bed in Julia’s Garden, looked after by an In Bloom volunteer, or have a wander around Hassacarr to see what the team have been up to.
The Parish Council Tree and Hedgerow Management Policy states it will use a qualified tree surgeon to inspect all trees in high-risk areas every two years. High risk areas will include areas adjacent to the public highway, major footpaths and other areas of high use such as the cemetery and play park. Areas deemed as non-high risk, that is areas away from public areas and highways, will be inspected every three years, for example Undergate Field
A tree inspection was undertaken last autumn and a three-year plan of work is now in place to maintain the current trees on Parish Council land unless any are severely diseased or in a dangerous condition. If any tree needs to be removed, it will be replaced with a native species of a suitable size and type to fit the growing conditions.
Three native oak trees have been planted this year to celebrate the Queens’ Platinum Jubilee, one on each of the Greens. Despite a slow start, there are signs of new growth on two of the trees now and we will be continuing to monitor them over the summer.
The new hedges in the Parish Council cemetery have had regular checks this year and some infill hedging has been completed in Julia’s Garden and the Millennium Garden, thanks to another free wildlife-friendly tree pack from the Woodland Trust and hardworking volunteers.
Your Wildflower Patch
The Parish Council is keen to add more photos to our Wildflower Gallery. If you have any to share, please email them to the parish clerk.
The parish council could not have developed these initiatives without the support of members of Dunnington Conservation Group, the local Treemendous Champion, the local Green Initiatives Group and various volunteers who have helped with hedge planting and maintenance working parties.
In addition, we have received free hedge packs and several ward grants to facilitate the wild flower beds and meadow.
Thank you to everyone for your ideas and support.
Chair, Environment Advisory Group