Repairs + feeding birds also first 2017 marsh marigold flower…

Monday February 27th 2017

This morning although weather forecast warned of  showers Colin, Chris and I all turned up for volunteering work as usual…

I began by filling the bird feeders- soon Colin arrived to help + he also kindly retrieved a dropped jar of bird food plus a fallen bird box from the undergrowth…

When Chris arrived to join us he was asked to repair the handrail on the steps below the shed this was nailed back on plus he also used cement to refit a post under the rail

Colin meanwhile fitted 2 support posts to the copper beech tree on the grassy area between the 2 main paths-hopefully this will help to keep the tree growing more upright!

I took some shears to chop the ivy growing under the rowan tree we’d been working on last Monday-I also retrieved a football and 5 tennis balls which had come over a tall fence by the playground..

Time for our coffee break- taken under or new shelter there was a heavy rain shower which sheltered us from getting a soaking.. 

The nursery class children and staff came through the school wildlife area as usual whilst we were there-they were on their way to the seating up near the raised vegetable growing planters by the classrooms..

First 2017 snowflake and marsh marigold flowers + blooms on the flowering currant bush seen this morning..

Due to wet weather conditions we packed up early and left for our homes around 10.30 am!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Feeding birds + weeding out alexanders and pruning out brambles …

Thursday February 23rd 2017

Most of the UK being battered by storm Doris today- thankfully in Teignmouth we have dry and  sunny weather-although the strong winds are ferocious ie 45 mph forecasted!

I had just finished feeding the birds when Rose arrived to help at 9am-she kindly staked some daffodils which were being battered by strong winds + also pruned back brambles and pulled out alexander plants whilst I dug out more primroses and crocus from the old  planted bed near the boiler house-I replanted them in the wildlife area..

Lots of  birds seen in the wildlife area this morning ie wood pigeons , blackbirds , magpies ,robins ,sparrows etc  + during our coffee break  a male bullfinch was near the ash trees by the lower pathway..

Rest of morning we spent removing lots of alexanders + some nettles and brambles plus adding various branches to the woodpiles + picking up litter and collecting balls thrown into the wildlife area!

Nursery class children and staff  came into the wildlife area again this morning ..

NB noticed the almond tree has blossom plus the blackthorn near the pond has new blossom….



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Feeding birds+shed tidying ,repairing handrail,removing noticeboard,watering pots and clearing ivy….

Monday February 20th 2017

At school by 8.20am started to fill bird feeders within our project site-Colin arrived to help about 15 minutes later-we’d just finished sorting the bird food containers ready for Thursday’s work session when Chris our 3rd member of the “Monday Team ” arrived to join us! 

I asked Colin and Chris to remove the large notice board at the top of the far steps – this board has been redundant for 2-3 years ie ever since the nearby fence was heightened…the board has been left in a safe position  until we buy more concrete + decide where best to re erect it!

Chris brought some rope from home to use as a handrail on the upper steps plus the men also refitted another part of the wooden handrail.

Meanwhile I was busily attempting to sort our storage shed which alas was very untidy-I took out over half of the contents, swept the floor +threw away some rubbish  before replacing the tools and bird food etc in hopefully a more orderly fashion!

Time next for our coffee break – taken on the seating along the top path in lovely sunshine + peaceful surroundings with lots of birds seen and heard…

NB Since Thursday last week I noticed quite a huge increase in the amount of flowers in bloom in our school wildlife area ie witch hazel,primroses, crocus, daffodils, snowdrops, hellebores, violets, celendines,red campion etc

After coffee I watered the flower pots near the shed-noticing that the perennial wallflower cuttings we added late last year to our daffodil pots are all growing well

Our final job was just past the willow dome where we removed the ivy which was growing on a rowan tree-ivy flowers and fruit are excellent foods for birds and insects however on the occasion the tree was unhealthily and increasingly being covered by a huge amount of ivy growth…

The nursery class children and staff came into the wildlife area earlier in the morning ….also later whilst we were clearing the ivy off the rowan tree it was morning playtime break -a few of the older children looking down could see  we were working on a tree and seemed concerned about what we were doing to the tree in in the school wildlife area…


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Replanting daffodils,crocus,iris and polyanthus plus weeding and pruning escallonia after feedingbirds…

Thursday February 16th 2017

At school by 8.15am I filled all the bird feeders in the wildlife area then gathered tools and plants in a wheelbarrow and went to the front of the school to start weeding  and pruning- I transplanted some polyanthus  from pots  we had in the wildlife area then began weeding ie digging out dandelion plants

Around 9am Rose arrived to help with weeding the beds at the front of school -we also pruned the escallonia shrub

After an hour we packed up as the 2 nearby compost bins + the wheelbarrow were full with garden waste.

On our way back to the wildlife area we cut back some ivy and brambles in the bed by the staffroom window-this job needs finishing asap…. 

We also cut off some suckers growing from the root stocks on the fruit trees on the grass slope by the playground-this job also needs completing asap…

After a coffee break in the lovely sunshine in the wildlife area Rose dug out lots of crocus, daffodils, iris, primroses and polyanthus growing on the bed by the boiler house-these plants were being flattened by children standing on them so we decided to move them to a safer place….

Next I emptied the wheelbarrow full of garden waste ie weeds and prunings onto the compost bins in the copse by the pond.

I also transplanted some primroses, crocus and daffodils into the wildlife area + sorted the bird food box ready for Monday’s work session.

After packing up everything we locked shed and gate and went round again to the front of school where we transplanted some iris and polyanthus into the flower beds

Wildlife seen in the wildlife area this morning included magpies, longtailed tits, blackbirds, robins and grey squirrels

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Feeding birds,repairing handrail + showing visitor around

Monday February 13th 2017

A super morning weather wise  ie very chilly plus  quite windy but thankfully sunny and dry…

Half term school holidays nevertheless I was at school by 8am as I wanted to fill the bird feeders before a visitor arrived..

Back then to the front of school had a lovely surprise when Colin arrived to help –  great to have him back after his illness!

Shortly after Chris arrived so we three went to the wildlife area -I decided it would be a good opportunity to repair the broken handrail by the far steps after helping to take the wood and tools + cement to the steps I left the men to work whilst I went to the front of school to welcome Stewart our visitor…

Stewart Henshie lives locally and is a real garden expert ie with many years experience working at Kew..

I gave Stewart the grand tour of the school grounds and told him about our project ie work and volunteers etc since our project began in 2004

Stewart is very busy with volunteering work within Teignmouth Orangery plus also helps support  a gardening team from Dawlish Garden Trust who we hope to have come to school to help us clear some brambles etc from a slope below the playground

NB the paths in the wildlife area have almost all been covered with new tree chippings from Teign Trees-many thanks to the staff and school children for all your hardwork


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Feeding birds + pruning back more brambles,weeding, litter picking and sampling homemade dampers cooked over a campfire!

Thursday February 9th 2017

At school by 8.30am I began as usual by filling all the bird feeders in and around our project site ie the school wildlife area..

Rose arrived to help at 9am shortly after a teacher invited us to pop up to the upper outdoor learning area above the wildlife area to sample with the nursery class some homemade doughy dampers -just cooked on sticks over a campfire then spread with homemade jam-they were very tasty!

Back down in the wildlife area Rose and I pruned back more brambles growing by the neighbours fence

Later during our coffee break we saw a male bullfinch + chaffinch and long tailed tits nearby.

After packing up we headed to the front of school where we did some weeding and litter picking before going home…

NB The school  have managed to get some deliveries of tree chippings from Teign Trees which the school children have helped spread around the seating area around the campfire-a teacher said he was going to get the children to bring down and spread tree chippings around our muddy paths in the wildlife area  asap…

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Feeding birds+chopping back brambles and making a shelter….

Monday February 6th 2017

At school just before 8.30am I began by filling all the bird feeders in and around the school wildlife area-the squirrels had again chewed through the wood and wire of a peanut feeder which I managed to repair…..

Soon after  I’d sorted the bird food ready for our next work session Chris arrived to help-as promised he brought tools and equipment from home which enabled him to fit a wet weather shelter for us to one of the seating benches near the wildlife pond….

Whilst Chris was busy with the shelter making I was working nearby pulling out and chopping up brambles from by the neighbours boundary fence= another large bag of garden waste added to the compost bin…

We enjoyed a quick coffee break under our shelter before packing up and leaving for our homes early ie when the forecasted rain arrived around 11.20am!

Spotted lots more primroses and snowdrops in bloom plus also come crocus and a witch hazel shrub also flowering…


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment