With our City Ranger and Community Payback we have cleared the over-grown shrubs in one of the two beds. We enriched the soil in the front half and will do the same to the back half when we are clearer about where to put a path and, hopefully, a bench. We'd also like to clear and plant up the other shrub bed - maybe with an Oriental theme to match the Chinese supermarket and take away and the existing Chinese weeping willow and cherry tree.
From 15 April, we have started a 'Wulfstan Way Raingardeners' group, which meets on the first and third Saturday of the month from 10 to 11 - to plan, do (and drink hot chocolate in the cafe). We now have a new useful set of 5 or 10 of each of hand tools suitable for children to use and some gloves for older children - a parent or guardian needs to stay with them though, and keep an eye on them, so we can all work safely.
- We are encouraging people to think about - and draw/collage - : 'A place for wildlife and people to enjoy'.
- Saturdays: not 1 July, 15 July, 5 & 19 August at Wulfstan Way.
- Saturday 2 September - during the Community Action Morning, we will have an RHS Greening Grey Britain stall - to celebrate the new garden and hopefully inspire people to green-up more of Cambridge - and join the cubs (most of the adult volunteers want to be cubs now).
- Monday 24 April, 6.30 to 7.45 pm, at Wulfstan Way - for 28th cubs - we had two main activities: surveying, soil testing and weeding docks and dandelions; starting to make a tree trail by numbering the trees, working out how old some of them are and how tall some are. We were so busy we didn't get around to doing any drawing but had made some printed 'frames' for 'Favourite trees' and 'A place for wildlife and people to enjoy'.
- Thursday 4 May, Community Payback with Rebecca, prepared beds for planting and also sanded the traditional bench.
- Saturday 6 May, Rebecca & Julian, with Dennis and Freddie, enriched the swale beds with well-rotted horse manure, examining lots of red worms as we did so. Also, we started to carefully prune the other shrub bed to see if we can make areas for new planting and re-vive the existing plants.
- Monday 8 May, evening, at Nightingale Garden, for 28th cubs - starting some plants off and gardening with Alison from RHS.
- Saturday 20 May, at Wulfstan Way - the big planting morning - with 28th cubs, with Alison from RHS.
- Saturday 3 June - we prepared the back of the shrub bed, made a path, prepared a base for the new bench, did some planting.
- Saturday 17 June - we did some weeding and watered all the plants - and tried out the giant bubble mix - because it was a hot day and we had some leftover mix.
Wulfstan 'Favourite Tree' Trail
This is a collaborative project with Queen Edith's in Bloom, Streets and Open Spaces at the City Council, 28 Cambridge Cubs, the RHS and The Cambridge Botanic Garden.
- We have a Map and list of the trees (from Kenny at the City Council).
- We have made some temporary labels with numbers on them - for cubs and local volunteers to hang on the trees with string. Printable version of the numbered trees.
- We hope to estimate the ages of the trees too by measuring their circumference (OPAL factsheet). From our measuring on 24 April we think:
- tree 1 (medium sized maple) might be 60 years old (about the time the shops were built, maybe);
- tree 7 (one of the cherry trees in the shrub bed) 43 years old;
- tree 12 (a small maple) might be 15 years old;
- tree 13 (another small maple 20 years old.
- The large Norway maple (tree 8), came out as 88 years old, which would be before the shops were built, probably.
- We hope to estimate the tree heights too. From our measuring on 24 April, we think:
- tree 8, the large Norway maple might be 22 m high.
- [there are some other heights but I can't quite read the writing].
- We are making some 'factsheets' of the main trees: Chinese weeping willow; Field maple; .
- We are also encouraging people, of all ages, to draw their favourite tree: 'frames' for 'Favourite trees'.
- From May 2017 onwards, we will be working with the Botanic Garden to make and attach some 'proper' labels to some of the trees. This is taking a bit longer because we are all a bit snowed under...
We will do something similar at Nightingale Garden and Rec/Park too over the Summer.
- 7 April 2017: Flyer about it.
- We have surveyed the site a few times, including with the cubs (simple plan of possible planting areas).
- The Young Foundation: Benches for everyone: Solitude in public, sociability for free;
- Cambridge City Council Sustainable Draining Systems (SUDS): has a very good guide - including about swales.
- Susdrain - about raingardens.
- UK Raingardens guide.
- RHS guides to planting in Wet/dry conditions; Perfect for Pollinators lists: Wildflowers and Garden plants.
- RHS Garden article on 'Improving drainage', which includes swales.
- OPAL Tree Heath Survey: Tree Guide (broadleaves).
- Examples of storm water chain gardens: Chelsea 2011 (Nigel Dunnett);
- Examples of Asia Gardens: Olympic Park;
- Examples of raingardens: John Lewis HQ London (Nigel Dunnett);
Last updated 17 June 2017