Wildflower Meadow 2017-03-16T17:31:50+00:00

WHEELDON TREES FARM

Wildflower Meadow

The story of a small field…

During our renovations in 2007-8, the area behind our garages had become a sort of dumping ground for rocks, earth and undersoil removed when we dug trenches for our ground source heat pump.  In the summers of 2008 and 2009 we were blessed (!) with a bountiful display of thistles, dock leaves and nettles.

We thought we might be able to do better…

So, in October 2009, we prepared the field to be reborn as a wildflower meadow.  Having no idea how to go about this, we contacted the National Park Authority who proved extremely helpful…

We collected the wood debris for burning and buried rocks and stones in a couple of convenient depressions in our fields.  Next, we needed topsoil – in particular ‘poor’ or unimproved soil that had not been fertilized with animal or synthetic fertilizer.

Lucky for us, Bill Nadin (the local farmer who rents most or our land for grazing) mentioned that he had a bit of soil – i.e. a couple of hundred tons – which he believed had been removed from the top of what is now Hindlow quarry.  A soil sample analysis by the Park Authority confirmed it was suitable and several dumper loads later we had a pretty impressive looking patch of earth.

The Peak Park kindly supplied us with a bagful of wildflower seed together with instruction on the type and density of grass seed with which it needed to be mixed prior to sowing.  We seeded the field accordingly and waited for spring…

After a very cold winter and very dry spring, it seemed like an eternity before anything happened.  Slowly but surely, the bare earth acquired a green tinge, followed by a grass stubble.  As instructed, we removed docks and thistles that dared to invade although they continue to lurk on the margins.

By July 2010 we had a reasonably realistic grassy knoll (c.f. Blackadder the Third for clever literary reference…) and our first wild flowers – Yellow Rattle, Ribwort, Cat’s Ear and White Clover.

A year later, and the meadow was full of ox-eye daisies and an ever increasing variety of species…

In March 2011, we planted ten fruit and nut trees supplied by in the meadow – give us a few years and we’ll be making our own cider !

 

 

Well we weren’t quite sure what was eating the food we put out, but now we are. Hello Herbie Hedgehog ! ... See MoreSee Less

 

Comment on Facebook

Ahh what a treat bless him. Xx

Ahh that's great how lovely xx

Ahh 😍😍 lovely to see

Adorable x

I've been meaning to post this poem for ages. First poem we've had dedicated to us. Brought a tear to my eye...!

For Deborah and Martin

Around a corner
to behold
Trees emerge
Different shades
more besides
Stone cottages
A welcome awaits
Flowers bright.
Embrace the air
On one’s face
Alpacas, lambs
delight.
From busy towns
to green countryside
Where people’s
gentleness care
is found.
From a hill
a sunset
cast a glow
Beauty that shows.
Wonderful peace
To know.

Maureen Thornton, Jun 2018

Thank you both so much…
... See MoreSee Less

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