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Autumn Clear-up at West Beckham Old Allotments - September 25th 2022

Nine of us met at West Beckham Old Allotments on Saturday September 24th, not put off by the heavy overnight rain and black threatening clouds. We were rewarded with a bright sunny morning with only a brief shower.

Roger gathered up some Viper’s Bugloss seed heads from the butterfly bank before this was given its annual haircut by newly trained scythers Elizabeth and Jonathan, with David raking and clearing away after them. The seed heads will be transferred to the meadows at North Lodge Park in Cromer, as part of our collaboration with Cromer Green Spaces.

The rest of the gang – Elly, new recruit Tony, Stu, Barb and Val – worked at clearing round the bases of the saplings in the shelter belt that we had planted last year, with the butterfly bank team joining us later. By removing grass and other plants from the area around these young trees, we improve their chances of flourishing by reducing competition for water, light and air. It also gives us an opportunity to check how the youngsters are doing. After this year’s prolonged drought, we feared the worst, but were relieved to find that out of 250 saplings, fewer than 10% had succumbed – a better percentage than would be expected even in a normal summer.

And of course there was plenty of chat while we worked and during our tea/coffee and doughnut break!

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