January saw us back to work in the forest garden and tackling the buttercups that were strangling some of the plants and taking over the paths. Some lovely pics courtesy of Michael Hill. We will continue to meet on the second Sunday of every month so if you want to do some volunteering in 2019 then come and join us! https://friendsofdalbyforest.wordpress.com/about/
This month’s work task saw us working at Staindale Lake. We were joined by members of the GoodGym running group who are a group of runners who “run to do good” via community work. They were racing at the Dalby Dash 10k race but offered their services for an hour before the race so they were put to work pruning the accessible trail around the lake. We greatly appreciate their help and hope they had a good run afterwards!
Regular Friends of Dalby welcomed new volunteer Judith F, newly arrived in the area, and our work focused on the area around the bird feeding area. A thick humic soil had built up around the feeders and it was getting very muddy during the winter and made access difficult. As we discovered, a lot of this was simply a build-up over tarmac and so the water just had nowhere to go. Hopefully having clearing it back will make things easier. In addition we dug out a ditch behind the feeders to further help with drainage and the birds immediately sprung into action to get at all the newly uncovered worms!
We also moved the feeders that were hung in the trees (almost impossible to get at during the summer when the trees are in full leaf) and hung them on a newly installed arch and have made room for two new bird tables we’ve arranged to be made.
We have further plans for this area, not least to install a bench to enable more comfortable bird watching. Watch this space!
Thanks to Jeni for the pics!
A bit of a wet one today but we did some trail clearing in advance of Fear in the Forest at the end of the month. Thankfully topped off with a nice hot drink at the cafe courtesy of ranger Paul. Some of us also took a quick trip up to see the new Nissan hut installation by Rachel Whiteread near the Adderstone.
Despite the rain, it was still lovely to see all the Autumn colours coming out.
Thank you to all the volunteers who came along to the work task this morning. There were only 6 of us but it felt like we achieved a lot.
We laid a membrane to suppress the weeds in the area behind the cafe at the courtyard (it’s very stony so that seemed the best way to kill off the weeds). We will work in this area next year as it is technically also part of the forest garden. We have lots of strawberries and currants to plant there.
In addition, we built a bug house (hotel?) with some pallets kindly donated by Mark from the maze . There are so many insects in the garden especially ladybirds and beetles at the moment, so we hope they enjoy their new accommodation!
A few hardy volunteers got a bit sweaty for July’s work task in the Enchanted Wood, erecting a new fence to maintain the boundary of the Enchanted Wood (our brash fence was simply too tempting for den builders). August sees our annual fundraiser the Duck Dash. Sunday 5th August from 11am (tickets on sale from c10am). Hope you can come along!
Our May worktask involved removing the trees tubes along the Ellerburn trail. A few years ago we planted a range of hedgerow plants including holly and hawthorne but now they are more established, it was time to remove the tubes now that they are less likely to be nibbled by deer and rabbits. We started the task last November – thankfully it was a bit warmer today!
A couple of us also did some more work on the forest garden which has burst into life this week. If you visiting the forest do call in to see it – and catch the Helen Sear exhibition in the courtyard at the same time.