Drenched volunteers….

Thursday July 2nd 2015

Rain showers were forecast however Colin and Rose still turned up to help me in the school wildlife area this morning

We filled all the bird feeders around our project site,sorted the bird food ready for next week then decided to have an early coffee break

Alas not long after we’d sat down the rain started and soon became heavier-to record we were drenched probably bit of an understatement-for a while we sat with our coffees getting wetter and wetter!

Soaked through we decided to pack up and head for our homes very much in need of dry clothes….

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Just me-feeding birds,watering ,planting etc+hundreds of unidentified tiny black beetles

Monday June 29th 2015

Colin unable to help this morning-is coming Thursday instead-so just me  working in the very warm sunny weather.

Noticed in the wildlife area lots of trees looking in need of a rain shower asap…

I began by filling all bird feeders around school wildlife area then watered the flower pots near the shed,the seat planter by the classrooms and the fruit trees near the playground

Also finished securing 2 more pallets to the fronts of  our compost bins in the copse by the pond- using stretchy bungies

After a coffee break off to the front of school-replanted 4 pots on front bed with fuschias and lobelia-also watered wooden planters+recently planted plants in various flower beds and pots.

Again lots of meadow brown butterflies and bees feeding on the scabious flowers near the front gate

 Hundreds of tiny black beetles on top of compost bin by water buts -still not identified!

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and then there were only 3 volunteers….

Saturday June 27th 2015

Saw Cath today whilst we were both visiting the NGS Open Gardens in Teignmouth-she alas informed me that she is starting a new venture ie working in her own art studio so will be unable to help us working in the school wildlife area for the “forseeable future”…

Cath has been part of our team for almost 10 years I think -we will miss her help and hope she finds time to help us again sometime in the future-we do of course wish her good luck with her artwork

So need urgent recruitment drive as have lost 25% of our team of volunteers!

Only 3 of us left and all OAP’s- ie Colin works with me on Mondays and Rose help me on Thursdays!!!

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Feeding birds,watering,making pallet compost bins,hazelnuts,almonds,cherries,broomrape,wild cornflowers+meadow brown butterflies,bees etc

Thursday June 25th 2015

Began by watering flower planters and pots + cosmos and snapdragons at front of school on my way to start work in school wildlife area…

Flower beds at front of school all very dry ie in urgent need of rain asap!

Several meadow brown butterflies and a variety of bees enjoying feeding on the colourful scabious flowers in the bed by the pedestrian gate….

Rose arrived in time to help me with filling bird feeders around our project site

 Alas I discovered recent new niger seed feeder poor value for money as birds pulling out niger seed from the small holes and leaving in the dish below plus need to use a screwdriver every time the feeder requires refilling!

Rose and I  used stretchy bungee elastics to the attach more of the wooden pallets to the front of pallet compost bins in the copse by the pond

Rather warm for strenuous work this am +am unwell with cough and cold so we spent rest of morning chatting over coffee and biscuits!

We spotted new  broomrape and cornflowers in bloom +ripening cherries on the trees by the top pathway plus almonds and hazelnuts on nearby trees-there were also blackbirds with outspread wings sunbathing in the dry soil along the top path ie presumeably  attempting to rid themselves of mites?

On the way out of school at noon we watered the hebes in the flower bed in the playground

NB to get more summer bedding plants asap for the 4 pots on the bed by main front gate before the Teignmouth in Bloom judges arrive!


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4 volunteers including student from China…

Monday June 22nd 2015

Damp and grey weather this morning however we carried on with our work as usual!

Not a great start to morning as I got as far as school wildlife area gate before realising I’d left my keys at home -so back home for keys  then on again uphill + 43 steps back to school!

Colin and I began by filling all the birdfeeders around our project site +we refilled our bird food containers ready for Thursday’s work session

Mike (ex volunteer and now manager of our learning centre) arrived with Peter a year 10 student at Trinity school-Peter is from China and was helping Mike today as part of his work experience placement

Mike and Peter spent the morning adding more wooden pallets ie securely fixing them to our compost pallet bins Mike made for us last year in the copse by the wildlife pond

Colin and I were also busy working at the front of school-in the bed  with the compost bin in the car park Colin planted and watered in the big bag of polyanthus I’d brought from Teignmouth railway station-left over after our volunteer team there had been replanting the flower pots last Friday

I was also busy planting 2 pinks in each of the wooden planters at the front of school+4 cosmos plants in the flower bed in the car park near the school kitchen-I also watered in the new plants+ watered the wooden planters and pots at the front of school

After a coffee break Mike and Peter finished off fixing the pallet compost bins,Colin refilled the water butts and I gathered some wildflowers ready for St Michael’s church flower festival and also watered the seat planter by the classrooms

NB Really appreciate Mike and Peter’s hard work this morning really great to have our composting area enlarged+brilliant to have extra volunteers helping our team



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Today only one volunteer….ME!

Thursday June 18th 2015

Rose away on holiday so just me working  in and around the school grounds this morning….

Began by filling all birdfeeders in the school wildlife area-have bought a 4th small niger seed feeder so now we have one on the ash tree by the lower path

I took 3 birdsfoot trefoil and 2 vipers bugloss wildflower plants up to school but didn’t have time to plant them today…

Rest of morning spent watering at the front of school + weeding the bed with the ash tree -not sure if I’ve mentioned this before but memo to architects please don’t plant ash trees in designated flower beds as each year we have to pull out hundreds of ash tree seedlings!

Lots of bees and butterflies seen plus also numerous birds seen and heard this morning

NB Have brought home plan of school wildlife area,birds nests and feathers,fir cones etc ready to take for our display at the annual St Michael’s Chuch Flower Festival in Teignmouth next week

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Repairing birdfeeders,feeding birds + weeding,planting and watering

Monday June 15th 2015 2015

Lovely warm and sunny morning-I began by filling all birdfeeders around our project site ie the school wildlife area whilst Colin was busy repairing our 2 large peanut feeders which had been damaged by grey squirrels chewing through the wire mesh again!

I also planted a new borage plant plus watered all the planted pots near the shed

NB Mrs Webber has donated a pot of silver birch saplings which we’ll plant in the wildlife area on Thursday

Colin and I next gathered a load of  shrub/hedge cuttings we found by the perennial bed behind the learning centre and took them down to the compost pile in the far corner of the school field

After gathering new perennials, tools  + a compost bin  we set off to work at the front of school-Cath arrived to help us

We placed the compost bin on the bebe and daffodil bed in the car park then all 3 of us weeded this bed before Colin watered the hebes  which are now thriving quite well after a slow start!

Cath  planted 3 pots of day lillies in the 3 main beds nearby whilst I planted a geum and an osteospernum in each of the wooden planters

Due to recent hot weather we again watered all the planters and pots plus  recent new planting at the front of school

NB we removed the large pile of hedge trimings someone dropped on the flower bed by the bin shelter-this was taken with more hedge cuttings found near the perennial bed to the field corner compost pile by Colin

NB Cath saw and heard a cirl bunting and a pair of bullfinches around the native hedge by school in Mill Lane this morning

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