Welcome to the Lancaster and Gurney Court Roads Pollinator Highway project!
Here we are doing a little meadow maintenance in a Lancaster Rd garden. After cutting it in the Autumn, we decided to give it a light scarify and resowed it with a mixture of seeds including yellow rattle, to try to encourage more wildflowers and a bit less grass.
Lancaster Rd recently hosted an Autumn Plant Swap for all our Wilderhood Watch Streets. It was so lovely to see members from all over St Albans come and exchange plants from their gardens. Planting flowers pollinators love will hopefully be a big step towards having a more wildlife friendly neighbourhood!
To encourage our Wilderhood Watch members to grow meadows in their gardens, we hosted our first Meadow Walk, checking out gardens on Harpenden, Seymour and Lancaster Rds. For more details please visit our main Pollinator Highway page.
Our Gurney Court and Lancaster roads gardens are becoming more pollinator friendly. Pictured here are primroses, cowslips and creeping Charlie (a native ground ivy). Swapping native plants like these amongst ourselves will add to our growing Pollinator Highway!
Before our official launch, residents spent an afternoon with local garden designer and St Albans Friends of the Earth member Amanda Yorwerth to scope their gardens for pollinator friendly plants. Amanda compiled a list of suitable plants in preparation for our September 2019 Plant Swap Day, the optimum time of year for planting, taking into account their drought resistance and how easily they can be grown.
Many of the plants are well-known natives, but Amanda also included some non-natives species which are pollinator friendly and will hopefully be able to cope with climate change.
Our Pollinator Highway Project was officially launched on 11 July 2019 with a talk led by Amanda Yorwerth: “Gardening, Plants and Pollinators”. Around 20 Wilderhood Watch members attended, including one representative from each of the Bernard’s Heath groups who have recently started their own Pollinator Highways, and also District Councillor Mandy McNeil who is collaborating with Wilderhood Watch for the St Albans City Centre Pollinator Project. Everyone who came brought their completed Pollinator Survey.
Amanda talked about how we can help boost the steeply declining numbers of pollinators by planting pollinator friendly species of plant, not using pesticides or fertilisers, and mowing our lawns less. She provided much needed advice on how to propagate and swap our chosen plants, explaining that the easiest way was to wait for seedlings to appear, before transplanting them into a container ready for our Plant Swap Day.
The results of our July 2019 pollinator survey are below:
We will repeat the survey in July 2021 and compare the results. Hopefully our Pollinator Highway will have increased the diversity of pollinator species across our gardens!