Feel Good Gardens and Sherwood Forest Trust have started work on a joint project to plant new trees and create a wildflower learning and teaching resource in King’s Clipstone.
They are creating a tree nursery to provide trees to re-populate the forests where trees and, in some cases whole forests, have been lost, as well as forming a wildflower meadow in the grounds of Feel Good Gardens and using this to run training sessions to educate people on the use of wildflowers, creation of wildflower meadows, planting and propagating seeds, and biodiversity.
A community day was held on 24th October, hosted by three members of staff on site at the RSPB Visitor Centre Sherwood Forest. Permission was given by RSPB to pitch a gazebo next to the path where most visitors pass, involving as many people as possible, and visitors were encouraged to collect acorns from the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve and return them to the group.
It is estimated that 10,000 acorns were collected by the 149 helpers involved. Most people approached were happy to collect on their walk and they chose a pot, bag, or used their own receptacle to collect as many acorns as they could. Children of all ages were excited to get involved a project which will be growing these acorns into trees in the tree nursery.
The acorns needed to be planted, so Feel Good Gardens invited a keen family of five from the collection day to the tree nursery on 27th October to help get started. The group needed to gauge the total size of the task ahead. They had a very large bucket of acorns, needing to be weighed, floated for viability and sown into root trainers. After weighing the acorns, the group realised they had far too many so they will easily reach the target 4,000 acorns for their plans. On the day they planted 400 acorns.
Work has also started in support of the creation of the wildflower meadow area. An area of the Feel Good Gardens site has been identified and a consultant has been appointed and given a brief to carry out eight teaching sessions for the local community, covering all aspects of wildflower meadow creation from plant identification, site and soil preparation, to sowing, growing and planting the right type of wildflowers for the specific conditions (in this case dry and sandy soil).
Feel Good Gardens has purchased wildflower seeds, non-peat-based growing medium (for plug plants), and other growing materials for sowing direct and creating a stock of back-up plug plants.
A local wildflower supplier and expert from Naturescape has been consulted and has agreed to offer informal advice as the project progresses.
Five local community groups and two schools have been contacted, and the project will be promoted to community gardens throughout the county via Nottinghamshire Community Garden Network (NCGN).
Dates for the training sessions have been agreed and will start in February 2023.
For more information visit www.feelgoodgardens.org or contact 01623 824665.