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, and Diane 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.

May in the gardens

Another busy month and, because of the mild wet weather, everything is growing rapidly.

Last month we cleared and replanted a bed of Persicaria  near the bridge. There was another bed of Persicaria on the other side of the bridge and, again, we dug this out and replanted some of the younger plants as well as potting some up for sale. 

We will have plants for sale on the 15th of June as part of The Swap Store: part of The Great Big Green Week. The Great Big Green Week is a national event and will see people across the country join together in a nationwide celebration of action to protect the planet, showing that people everywhere across the UK are making swaps every day to help create a better tomorrow. We are hosting events throughout The Great Big Green Week so do check them out!

We will have a variety of plants for sale that flower at different times of the year providing food for various pollinators throughout the year. We also hope to have bug houses, bird nesting boxes, bat boxes etc. for sale all made by volunteers at the Forest Centre.

Back in the garden we removed some of the Hellebores and Euphoria that were growing close to the path along side the border. These may have been damaged when the new path was laid so we moved them to other parts of the garden to keep them safe. We also pruned the Viburnum that was growing adjacent to the pond.

In the Sensory and Wildlife Garden we found several Burdock plants which we removed before they produced seed. The many Forget-Me-Nots in the gardens had also set seed so it was necessary to remove them. These seeds stick to your gloves and cloths so we wore waterproof clothing and plastic gloves to prevent them sticking to us!

Image: Photos taken by Pauline Lazell 

We spent quite a bit of time in the Smudge Garden where we weeded the scree areas and removed a large Mallow as well as the Forget-Me-Nots. The Alliums are in flower at the moment and are providing a good show. The Astrantias at the front of the garden are also just coming in to flower. The Ajuga and Pasque flowers have finished flowering and we are just about ready to collect seed from the Pasque Flowers to sow with the intention of increasing our stock.  

There are a lot of Pendulous Sedge seedlings growing in the block paving which we have removed along with other weeds. We have also cleared along the edge of the main path and swept out the detritus from under the hedge adjacent to the children’s play area. Several of the large Pendulous Sedges along the path are now dead and we are gradually digging them out.

There are a lot of bees in the gardens at the moment and we have seen Mallards and Moorhens on the pond. There have been a number of junior school children pond dipping in the bog pond and they have discovered various insects and a newt. One little girl also said she had seen a bear in the woodland!

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