We are pleased that we will be working with Stirling Council this year to improve one of the neglected patches of trees and shrubs by the river path. The aim is to improve the planting, introducing woodland plants and flowers and different types of tree.
One of the first tasks will be to remove dead or diseased trees. Some of the younger trees will also be cut back to make sure that the remaining trees have enough light, space and water to grow well. It’s a bit like thinning out seedlings, or having a clear out – sometimes it can look worse before it gets better. The cut wood will be used on site to create a log pile home for woodland minibeasts. These minibeasts are an important part of woodland ecology and help to look after the soil and plants.
The tree work will be done by Stirling Council who will also bring some much needed compost. The compacted soil needs some care and nurturing and compost will add nutrients, improve its structure and drainage and encourage the beneficial creatures that live in the soil.
When these first tasks are done and the growing conditions are improved, we can begin to introduce more flowering plants. Plants will be chosen that do well in woodlands in our Scottish climate, and that can be enjoyed by both people and wildlife as a source of nectar, scent and colour. Some of the planting will happen in the late Autumn so we will see new flowers appearing in the spring and summer of 2021.
Our volunteers working very hard, getting soggy and clearing out the invasive Himalayan Balsam which thrives on our riverbank. It is considered an invasive species and as a result dominates over the native plants and flowers.