The cowslips are currently at full flush across the WILDFLOWER MEADOW area. The new hedgerow planted along the South border of the meadow is leafing up fast. The new plants introduced last January (to replace those that failed during the drought last year) have a different colour supporting cane to help identify for watering should we experience prolonged drought.
Over at the WILDLIFE POND it was good to see the water reach its maximum level following the winter rains. There are currently many beetles and newts to be seen active and we have recently noticed the heron at the pond- not such good news for our newt population! The Marsh marigold around the perimeter is in full flower shortly to be followed by the fast establishing bog bean. Water mint now seems to be spreading to all areas, hopefully this will not become too invasive.
Around the WIDER SITE the perimeter trees are also leafing up fast and starting to make good size. Their growth has been challenged by their proximity to the border hedge, presenting competition for sunlight and water. Capp’s Corner (the shaded seating area on the N corner of the meadow by Deb’s plot) is now fully established with little or no gap remaining between the trees. Many snowdrops and narcissus now flower beneath these trees through February and March.
There have been many more finches and other birds present around the site over the winter season. On most day’s we have been visited by Kestrel, Buzzard and Red Kite. We hope that some of these visitors will take advantage of the maturing trees and hedgerows and choose to stay and nest during the breeding season. The large hedge planted around the pond some 4 of 5 years back will hopefully attract a nesting resident for the first time.
Des Merrill has very kindly offered to continue to cut our grass this year, once again free of charge. Should you be on your plot when his tractor and gang mower arrives please remember to move cars away from the grass lanes to give him a clear run around the site.