Yesterday Jenny and thirteen volunteers joined us at Blackwater Reach, a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) meadow on the Blackwater Valley Path by Sandhurst Memorial Park. Sue led a group of volunteers to construct a stag beetle stumpery, the 23rd we’ve built this year, so we’re well on our way to the Blackwater Valley Countryside Trust target of creating 50 stag beetle stumperies along the Blackwater Valley this year.
Meanwhile the rest of us cracked on with opening up the paths and hay-cutting the meadow. By removing the late summer hay we lower the nutrients in the sward, which reduces the grass growth and promotes the more delicate wildflowers, such as betony. Jenny gained experience using our BCS motorscythe to cut the hay, before we all stopped to shelter in the shade at lunch time and cool down with ice lollies.