Tuesday 24 September 2013

Cemetery Tour Part 2

The guide on Saturday spoke at length about the importance of our local cemetery being a relatively undisturbed green space within a built up area. I had heard about how graveyards provide a sanctuary  for wildlife but I suppose I had never really given it much thought in connection to the sites near me.

Normally I, as would many others, associate churches and places of rest with evergreen trees. Certainly they have got the familiar range of those planted but more unusually these sit along side less expected specimens.
This is a Manna Ash- the patterns on the trunk are due to its grafting

Fabulous copper beeches.
A cork tree
The team have great plans to expand their wildlife friendly policy but need volunteers to do so as not unexpectedly there are no funds available for such projects. They currently work with the probation service but hope to set up a Friends association to take it further. At the current time they have a multitude of bird and bat boxes mounted on the trees and green woodpeckers are frequently sighted. They deliberately plant low maintenance perennials such as sedums and geraniums on neglected plots which only need strimming once a year and attract the insects. Even late in the season the area is still awash with pretty self seeded calendula
which gives it a glorious patchwork of colour. Next year they are leaving an area to grow wild in the hopes of creating a bee friendly environment so I shall hopefully return and see how it is developing.

Chatting to others on the tour some were already volunteers in a now redundant cemetery in Worthing- they had actually come up to gain inspiration for the wild life ground maintenance aspect for their own area. If you do get the chance to attend one of these it's certainly worth considering.


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