Conservation Report – October 2023

Our monthly conservation session had a great turn out considering the weather.  Twelve adults and two children attended.  The children who came to help planted some wildflower bulbs.  We wore our new Hi-Viz tops which show the FOFH logo!

Left: As usual, the pathways needed clearing of leaves and mud, so we worked on the section which runs parallel to Dorset Way.

Right: At the main entrance to the woods, there was a large pile of rhododendron chippings waiting to be moved onto the soft surface pathway.

There were enough volunteers to continue with one of our major tasks of removing rhododendron.

The rhododendron is left at the Dorset Way entrance to be chipped.

We edged one of the paths and planted bluebell bulbs, lesser celandines, snakehead fritillaries and wood anemones.  This is an area previously cleared of rhododendrons.

In the wetter areas, we planted ramson commonly known as wild garlic. All the plants are native to the UK and were suggested by WBC Countryside Service in their management plan for the woodland.

The rhododendron is removed because it is an invasive species, and it stops a greater variety of woodland trees from establishing.  Where we have cleared thick sections, it is already lighter and the smaller native trees that we planted are growing well.

We clear the pathways which have a hard surface of mud to aid drainage and use chippings on the paths that are softer to help them remain usable.  Edging popular routes helps to guide walkers to stick to the pathways and so less of the woodland is trampled on.

Please come and join us next time.

Stephanie McKay