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We offer a wealth of knowledge around all things Wildflower

The country may be in lockdown but we hope that this month’s blog brings some joy to your day as we take a look at a special project in Gloucestershire.

 

Cotswold garden design specialists, Graduate Gardeners recently sent us through some thoroughly delightful images of a recent project, and we thought them too good not to share.

With over 40 years’ experience, Graduate Gardeners are a multi award-winning garden design, construction and landscaping company situated near Stroud and working predominantly throughout Gloucestershire.

Based on a two acre site in Bisley, the Graduate Gardeners team provide a full range of garden services including garden design, construction and landscaping.

The project in question is a long-running one, with Graduate Gardeners working with their client to transform an orchard area and garden surrounds on land located in a rural position south-west of Stroud.

Split into phases over several years, the first phase saw Graduate Gardeners trialling Wildflower Turf in a smaller area closer to the client’s main garden, whilst the orchard area itself was seeded. The seeded area established adequately and provided colour throughout the season. However, it…

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A rough and scrubby patch of ground in East Sussex is now a wonderful haven for some very important (and industrious) creatures.

 

Based near Tunbridge Wells, BALI Award winning Sandstone Design has been designing and landscaping gardens in the Kent and East Sussex area since 1998.

In 2018, Sandstone was commissioned to work their magic on a scrubby patch of private land. The client’s brief was simple; transform an unused area of rough grass within a six-acre garden, into a wildlife space. The client also desired to keep bees within the newly created space, and this was a key requirement of the design which needed careful consideration.

The Sandstone team of landscapers began work in summer 2018 with the creation of a new, 20 x 30-foot wildlife pond, complete with oxygenating plants.

Beside this pond, reclaimed sleeper decking and an oak building (which had featured at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2017) were installed, providing the client with a joyous spot from which to enjoy the new, tranquil wildlife garden.

Also featuring next to this wonderful water feature is a wildflower meadow, with the Sandstone team laying 120m²…

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It’s never too early to foster a love of wildflowers and an appreciation for their many merits, and we were thrilled to recently receive an update from our friends at Wordsworth Primary School in Southampton, Hampshire.

  

Towards the end of 2016, Wordsworth Primary School in Southampton was the recipient of funding from the Heritage Lottery Funded biodiversity project, Polli:Nation. (Polli:Nation is a fantastic UK-wide initiative supporting pupils from 260 schools to turn their school grounds and other local walk-to spaces into pollinator friendly habitats.)

A portion of the funding received by Wordsworth Primary School was set aside for a small wildflower meadow project at the school (approx. 18m²) with the objective of enhancing the school’s Nature Zone.

Steve Bowles, the school’s Outdoor Learning teacher researched the project and then contacted Wildflower Turf Ltd. It was decided that Wildflower Turf Native Enriched would be a great fit for the project and the turf was laid by the school’s Tough Mudder Rangers (students from Year 6) in February 2017.

By May of that year a stunning display of colour was in evidence. Children, parents and staff were so impressed by the wildflower meadow that it was decided…

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We are delighted to hand our blog over to a special guest contributor this month!

Keith Betton is the Chairman and County Recorder of the Hampshire Ornithological Society. Keith has kindly agreed to let us share his findings from his 2019 visit to Ashe Warren Farm, where he discovered a few lovely surprises.

 

The wildflower and grass turf strips at Ashe Warren Farm are attractive to breeding birds with good numbers of common birds but also some scarce and declining ones. On visiting in April 2019, I was amazed to find 14 pairs of Lapwings incubating eggs. This is a Red-listed species, treated as Vulnerable in the UK and Near-threatened globally. Farming changes and an increase in predators in England have driven the steep decline in the breeding population and since 1960 numbers have dropped by 80 percent. So, to find 14 pairs nesting was tremendous. These days they only succeed well when they can group together and work as a team to chase off predators. Also, the lack of foxes and badgers at Ashe Warren will have helped.

Another great discovery was a nesting pair of Stone-curlews. Although this is much rarer…

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Our MD, James Hewetson-Brown, recently shared his thoughts on Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) with a leading UK landscaping publication. In our first blog for 2020 we’ve summarised James’ article in brief, outlining the likely impacts as the mandatory BNG deadline draws nearer.

 

Biodiversity

The loss of biodiversity is up there with climate change as an issue that should concern us all. Economic models such as Kate Raworth’s Doughnut Economics recognises the loss of biodiversity as an economic disaster and presents the case for an urgent need to understand that economies are intrinsically linked to the environment.

There are many initiatives in the UK with the objective of supporting and enhancing biodiversity to benefit wildlife and society. The most recent of these is Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG).

What is Biodiversity Net Gain?

The Environment Bill (2019-2020) aims to improve society’s care and awareness of water and air quality and resource use/waste reduction. BNG is a section within the Bill that concentrates on biodiversity within the built environment, specifically targeting new development.

In simple terms, BNG aims to ensure that, for any new development, on-site biodiversity is first assessed and recorded, and…

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Are you all caught up on our very busy first six months of 2019? Excellent!

Read on to discover what the final months of the year held for the Wildflower Turf Ltd team.

 

July

You say July, we say Hampton Court! We once again supplied product to a number of RHS Hampton Court Garden Festival gardens, several of which were successful in winning medals.

We supplied the Thames Water Flourishing Future Garden with 70m² of Landscape Show Turf. Visitors to the garden were encouraged to consider how they could enhance biodiversity, reduce water use and prevent flooding in homes and community spaces. Designed by Tony Woods and built by Garden Club London, the Thames Water Flourishing Future Garden was awarded a Gold Medal.

Wildflower Turf Ltd also supplied 5m² of Species Rich Lawn Turf to the Calm Amidst Chaos garden. The garden drew awareness to the importance of creating peace and tranquility amid the potentially overwhelming modern world. A Silver Gilt medal winner and widely lauded, this garden was sponsored by Maytree House in London, which serves as a sanctuary for…

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It’s become somewhat of a tradition here at Wildflower Turf HQ to dedicate our December blog to the year that was. So grab a mince pie (or three) and settle down with a cup of something warm (and preferably mulled) as we take a whistle-stop tour back over the events that shaped our 2019.

 January

The year began with a final delivery of SuDS Turf to our Berkshire-based Accredited Partners, Scofell Landscapes. The team at Scofell are responsible for landscaping the Edenbrook project in Fleet, a development by Berkeley Homes offering a selection of distinctive, high specification homes bordering an 82-acre country park.

Wildflower Turf Ltd had supplied Scofell Landscapes with a combination of both SuDS Turf and Landscape 34 Turf over many months and these deliveries concluded for us in January. However, Edenbrook is an ongoing project for Scofell Landscapes, and remedial work (after other services have left the site) will continue for some time to come.

Look out for a blog post on this project in the New Year!

We also provided 180m² via our Accredited Partner Green Tech to Seton Sands Holiday Village in Scotland. Along with the many activities on offer for children at this pretty holiday park our favourite by…

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With the help of Sally Marshall Garden Design and Wildflower Turf Ltd, Devour Restaurant in Yorkshire has transformed a riverside location into an oasis of wildflowers.

Devour at The Dyehouse is nestled in the picturesque and historic Holme Valley in Yorkshire and prides itself on providing the very best of old school Italian fare. The family run restaurant offers an evolving menu and, although newly opened, is already receiving accolades. Wishing to maximise the location of Devour, owner Olivia Robinson contacted Sally Marshall Garden Design and a beautiful wildflower environment came into being.

Sally very kindly agreed to speak to us about the project – here is what she had to say:

 

Tell us about Sally Marshall Garden Design?

I have been a keen gardener all my adult life. After my children arrived, I needed a change so decided to re-train in horticulture at Askham Bryan college, York.

In 2017 I established @SallyLandscapes and since then I have been designing residential and commercial outside spaces in West Yorkshire.

It is a privilege to…

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A stunning transformation by one of our Accredited Partners.

 

It’s always so rewarding to view the positive changes that our Wildflower Turf brings to landscapes up and down the country and we’re delighted when our Accredited Partners share their installation successes with us.

This month’s blog features a project by Little Fones Landscapes. Based in Dorset, Joe and the Little Fones team have been Wildflower Turf Ltd Accredited Partners since October 2014.

Little Fones Landscapes specialises in providing bespoke landscaping solutions to both private and commercial clients. As well as landscape design, Little Fones offer landscape construction, garden restoration and maintenance, as well as arboricultural and conservation services.

The inception of their featured project begins with the owner of a private property in South West Dorset attempting to use seed to establish a wildflower meadow at the rear of their residence. The seeding attempt was unsuccessful and so Joe and the team were called in to assess viability and provide expert assistance!

The area in question is situated between a tennis court and a copse at the rear of the residence. A large Beech tree filled much of the space but had died and so required felling as a first step.

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We have recently started a series of webinars looking at all things wild flower. Our most recent webinar was on the subject of using wild flowers on green roofs and we hope it is helpful to follow this up with a blog on the subject.

I will follow the running order of the webinar and keep the blog brief. To get more detail follow the link at the end of the blog and listen to the webinar.  If there are any questions please do not hesitate to call us for more information.

There are now many customers using wild flowers on green roofs as an alternative to sedum matting.

From castles to bike sheds!

The key to any green or living roof is to first make sure it does what it is supposed to do i.e. be a waterproof roof that is insulated where necessary.

To do this well the important considerations are:

Get the design right – plan its shape, slope, planting, access for maintenance, general build up including growing media and irrigation if required. Installation –…

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