Showing posts from June, 2022

Dry Sandford Pit, Saturday 25th of July 2022

 This week's blog post was written by the Himalayan-balsam bashing hero, Eleanor D.:  Our main task at Dry Sandford Pit was to pull up Himalayan Balsam. There was also a bit of scything and cutting back to do to do in order to widen one of the paths. We set off for the stream and boggy ground where most of the Himalayan Balsam grows. As you can see from the photos. There was a lot of cautious slithering down the steep banks and the crossing point  had to be carefully chosen to avoid sinking down deep into the mud on the stream bed. Even on the other side the ground was very boggy. We had had a Saturday session of balsam pulling last year as well as some impromptu evening sessions and our hard work had paid off as not very much had sprung up this year. We scoured the area, pulling up what we could find and by tea break time we had done the bulk of it. Meanwhile, Sally had been scything along the path and after the break some of us went off to cut  back encroaching bushes. We then to

Boundary House Fen, Saturday 18th June 2022

This week's blog post was written by the wonderful Kevin! Boundary House Fen is one of our SSSI (Sites of Special Scientific Interest), which we have been working on with Natural England and the backing of the Frilford Heath Golf Club.  The last couple of years has seen the biggest change, with Dr Judy Webb (a Biologist) and Rod D'Ayala taking a hands-on approach in returning the fen to its wetland environment. Rod has been the driving force, directing Green Gym's volunteers to help cut reeds and dam the drainage stream that went through the fen, causing the water to flood and spread out, along with Rod's diversion of the water round the edge of the bog and filtering down through it. This encourages the growth of fen plants that eat the roots of the reeds, keeping them from taking over and so letting more light in for other rarer fen plants to recover and grow. The pictures taken by Michele showed the variety colour there is to be seen on the fen. A little visitor came

Hinksey Heights Nature Reserve, Saturday 11th of June 2022

This week's blog post was written by AGG Chair, Eleanor D.! Our numbers were somewhat depleted as the ATOM Science festival had poached some of our regular volunteers, so only eight of us made the long trek from the Golf Club car park to the site on this extensive nature reserve where we were working. Adrian explained the tasks to us. The main one was to transfer the piles of bramble and brush, which had been cut on a previous visit, across the stream to be made into a dead hedge on the other side. As this area will be used by schools as a Forest School, this meant pupils would be able to access the stream but not escape over the other side. Meanwhile Adrian and Jim set to work scything the grass. Transferring the brambles and scrub across the stream proved quite hard work as many of the brambles needed cutting up and the sides of the stream and stepping stones across were uneven and slippery, but Graham, Roger and Michele made a really good job of building the dead hedge. We were