What was once 3000 sq feet of unloved and uninspiring closely-mown grass outside a council block on Devonshire Road (at the corner of Bennett Street) is now buzzing with life. A combination of letting nature run its course and some interventions and management to give a helping hand has resulted in impressive biodiversity with 16 species of birds, loads of bees, wasps, butterflies, moths, beetles including nationally rare species, spiders, and even the occasional fox and bats!
Work started in earnest in October 2019 with a day of work with Abundance volunteers, planting loads of bulbs, adding some pollinator friendly perennials and sowing annual wildflowers. Since then, some seating and insect hotels have been added which have a variety of occupants, mini ponds and ditches dug and some more plugs put in but mostly it’s been about watching it grow. The mantra is “Don’t Mow Let It Grow!” and we’ve been rewarded with some surprises such as Dyer’s Weld, Wild Parsnip and currently a froth of Yarrow.
It’s been great to see people enjoying it and connecting to wildlife and to each other too. The garden has connected residents in quite unexpected ways. We’re looking forward to more surprises as the wildlife garden progresses and we continue to be rewarded for giving nature a home.