11 May 2013

Update on Ginna's wildlife allotment.

You may remember, just over a  year ago I visited Ginna's wildlife garden (see older posts to view. Click on the button at the bottom right of the posts) and promised to re-visit to see how it has progressed. This I did last week. Things have certainly matured . In the centre there is now an official orchard, meaning there are more than 6 fruit trees. These were all in bloom and looked terrific. Last year the trees they did have had hardly any blossom on them at all. Gina is just hoping the bees do their job to pollinate them, but there is a serious lack of them around. Two notable blossom  trees are the crab apple "Everest" and a red blossomed apple whose apples are completely red all the way through, called "Red Love"
The orchard in bloom.

Blossom of crab apple "Everest".

The red leaves and blossom of "Red Love"

The various habitats to attract the insects and birds are still there, together with the rain water pool for them all to drink from, a small pond for the foxes to enjoy is there too. Gina is rather disappointed that no frogs have decided to take up residence yet, but hopes they will come in time. They found their first hedgehog buried under a compost heap in the allotment next door and moved him or her into their custom made hedgehog home. Apparently, nobody told it about this des. res. when hibernation time came.
I was really interested to see how the slow worms were doing, their habitat has been well used and there are quite a few different coloured ones.

One of the slow worm habitats.
Here are several of the inhabitants:

Trying to escape the light.
A stripey one.
A smaller one.
The birds were singing and flying around, the nesting boxes were much in evidence. They love this gorse bush, it's colour shone through the grasses.
Beautiful gorse bush.
Gina, her friends Marion and Peter, spend hours tending this allotment. I hope the wildlife appreciate it.  It is a lovely calm oasis in the middle of Dagenham.
Gina and Marion doing the weeding.
Here is an over-view of the allotments:
The front of the allotments. Gina's is at the right, far end.
At this time of year there is a lot of weeding to be done, here is Gina, on her knees, doing just that:
Gina, next to the rain water pool.
There was a lovely clump of rhubarb which needed thinning out, so I came away with some juicy sticks to stew with my cooking apples, it was very tasty.

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