Chances are if you've visited Millennium Country Park in recent years then you've definitely seen the handiwork of our dedicated Volunteer Gardeners! PaulineMike, Helen, Diane and David meet at Millennium Country Park every week - come rain or shine! - and look after the day-to-day maintenance of the garden areas that our visitors love so much.

Each month they'll be giving us an update on what they've been up to in the Park, and features to look out for on your next visit.

Banner image: Rudbeckia, Mike King

The drought goes on!

Despite some rain the ground is still very hard and we are still not able to lay down any mulch, or do any replanting.

We have, however, spent a lot of time doing general tidying removing dead foliage, and raking up dead leaves and other detritus.

There has been some colour in the garden. The Captain Tom rose has flowered for the first time, although we are still puzzled as to why a red rose was named after a Yorkshire man! The plant is still quite small but is well established and looks healthy.

Image: Captain Tom Rose, Mike King

Another plant that has given a good display is the Rudbeckia which is quite well sheltered in the side garden.  We are also just beginning to see the cyclamens come into flower by the bridge.

The two perennial wallflowers (Erysimum) in the Smudge Garden are older plants and seem to be past their best. In consequence we have cut them back almost to ground level. We will wait until the spring and see if they recover, and if not we will remove them and introduce some new shrubs in their place.

We have carefully removed the dead flowers from the Knautia and Buddleia in the hope that they will produce another set of flowers.

Image: Cyclamen, Mike King

The Lavatera has been very colourful for many weeks but has now finished flowering, and looks as if it is suffering from the heat. The tops of the branches were wilting so we have pruned them back and thinned some of the lower branches, opening up the shrub giving it a better shape and improving the air flow.

The Forest Centre Team have recently purchased a new shredder for us. Three of us have gone through the risk assessment and are now ready to us it.  We much prefer to shred our material and add it to the compost rather than burn it.

We sorted through our potted plant collection tidying up the plants and repotting quite a few, and successfully sold quite a few on the volunteer stand at Forest Family Fun Day!

We need support to grow and look after our green spaces

Our volunteers kindly donate their time to help us plant trees and look after our Community Woodlands and Millennium Country Park. For just over £1 per week you can help support us too:

Become a Friend of the Forest