Take a look at the new pollinator-friendly, beach-themed, flower bed on Marine Drive, West Wittering!
A group of volunteers came out and helped to create this coastal themed flowerbed from a blank canvas. The planting will provide food for pollinating species and is made up of wildflowers and close relative cultivars. More flowers will be installed in the next few weeks as they are delivered but this bed is now an attractive feature and has been given the thumbs up by local residents.
The flowerbed is part of the work we're doing with West Wittering Parish Council (WWPC) to improve the local area for wildlife and is a bit different to our usual activities.
The triangle of land here, opposite the car park, is owned by WWPC and the grassed area around the flowerbed is now being left mostly unmown in order to attract invertebrates.
WWPC kindly organised for the flowerbed to be created and funded the plants and materials - our volunteers did the rest!
The flowerbed was designed by one of talented volunteers, Emma Horton (pictured below), who just happens to be an excellent gardener, garden designer, and all round super human being! The design features recycled wood and driftwood and other items found on the beach.
A membrane was placed over the flowerbed to prevent grass taking over the flowerbed.
A mix of native and related cultivars were planted. Old wooden stakes echo the beach groynes found on our local beaches.
A mix of different gravels, stones and sand were used to give the 'beach feel', in keeping with the local area.
The finished bed was thoroughly watered after completion. Local residents have kindly said they will keep on top of watering the flowerbed over the summer months - thank you!
If you are interested in wildlife gardening and are lucky enough to have your own garden here are a few ideas:
Plant native plants or look for pollinator-friendly plants. They are often labelled in garden centres as 'bee friendly' or 'plants for pollinators'.
Let the grass grow long and wildflowers flower! Have you heard about No Mow May?
Plant native trees or fruit trees. There are plenty of small varieties available including those on dwarf stock.
Put in a pond. This is probably the most important thing you can do for wildlife in your garden. it doesn't need to be huge or deep - consider a 'mini pond' - even an old washing up bowl or bucket sunk into the ground will attract wildlife.
Stop spraying! Stop using pesticides (bug killers) and herbicides (weed killers). Embrace the bugs and the wildflowers! Aphids are food for ladybirds and blue tits. It's not a 'weed' - it's a wildflower. Find out about other ways to deal with 'pests' in the garden.
Make a log pile or bug hotel. You can just leave any old logs, branches, old leaves, or clippings in a pile in a quiet corner of the garden. The beetles and other invertebrates will love it. It doesn't have to look fancy!
Enjoy your garden and the wildlife that lives there!