FoEP: Improving the Park for the benefit of the whole community
Work near Eleonore House ....
During April, Jo Stephens and Mary Hamilton from Daffodils Decluttering, assisted by Chris Freeman and Vic & Janette Smith, have been working on the west-facing Eleonore House Insect-friendly Herbaceous Border and the north-facing Eleonore House Wildflower Border. Both borders have been dug over and weeded while sand and compost have been added to the north end of the herbaceous border in an attempt to improve soil structure. Several Rosa arvensis (field rose) plants have been put in against the fence at the south end of this border while Hypericum calycinum (rose of Sharon) has been planted where the border widens out under the tree. Primula veris (cowslip) plugs, originally intended for the 'Eleonore House Meadow', have been planted at intervals along the front of both borders and a few hawthorn bushes put in along the north-facing fence, including one at the corner where the two borders meet to discourage people from cutting across the ends of the borders especially during winter when the ground is muddy and the plants are not obvious. All the new planting (and some of the old) has been watered in using water from the new external taps at Eleonore Hose. (We have been given permission to use these taps but, unfortunately, not to connect a hose.) The Friends of Eastfield Park are very grateful to Jo and Mary for the work they are doing and for the fact that they have volunteered to look after the herbaceous border throughout the year.
Volunteers coming in May
Other News ....
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Work on the 'artificial' wildflower meadow in front of the Eleonore House Wildflower Border has been much slower than expected. The main reason for this has been the hardness of the ground and lack of rain to soften it up. The whole area has been raked to remove as much of the dead (poisoned) grass as possible and patches of turf, especially where living grass remained, have been removed. This should reduce the nutrient levels in the soil and provide areas where introduced species can become more easily established. The area was eventually seeded on 26th and 28th April under fairly dry conditions. If the sowing fails it will be repeated in the autumn.
Slow progress on Meadow
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During May we hope to have various groups of volunteers working in the Park. A team from Nationwide Building Society is expected towards the end of the month. They will spend a whole day in the Park carrying out a range of activities, probably including filling in holes, clearing undergrowth, and improving informal pathways. Parklands cub scouts should be spending an evening in the Park, probably spreading chippings on pathways, cleaning the 'Manfield steps' and weeding part of the Crescent Rock Garden. Students from Northampton College should be working in the Park some Wednesday afternoons picking up litter and moving fallen branches. The tasks allocated to these groups are only tentative at present and could change depending on the size of the groups, weather conditions, etc.
WE WOULD LIKE MORE LOCAL RESIDENTS TO VOLUNTEER TO WORK IN THE PARK, EVEN FOR JUST ONE HOUR A MONTH. Contact us through the 'Contact' page if you are interested in helping.