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Wotton Area CAN & St. Mary's EcoChurch

They always say getting started is the hardest part, so it was a stroke of good timing (and a bit of good old Wotton networking) that brought Wotton Area CAN and St Mary’s Ecochurch together just when the Ecochurch were wondering how to move forward on their plans to improve the churchyard for wildlife.

Wotton Area CAN were able to help support the project by writing a short management plan which had three clear aims:

  1. To understand how good the churchyard already was

  2. To be clear about what the objectives for the future were

  3. Provide some guidelines on how to make the agreed changes

The Ecochurch team were clear that they didn’t want to ‘garden’ the churchyard; it already has a wonderful wild ambience but they did want to create more wildlife habitats.  The plan that we produced focused the team on three main areas.  First was planting the back wall with pollinator shrubs and flowering herbaceous plants such as Guelder Rose, Buddleia, Mahonia, Verbena, Musk mallow, Lavender and Rosemary.  Second was creating a couple of small wildflower beds using a mix of colourful annuals and perennials and third was providing nesting boxes and a water source for songbirds. Another generous grant from North Nibley Festival provided the funds to buy the seed, plants and nest boxes.

It was then down to the hard work of the Ecochurch volunteers who put in several sessions of clearing rubbish, removing turf for the wildflower bed and planting the shrubs that has brought this plan to fruition: their efforts were rewarded by a wonderfully colourful churchyard over the summer last year. 

The ongoing care over the winter and new plans for 2024 (another wildflower area near the drive) mean that the churchyard will deliver even more for wildlife, and in particular pollinators, over the coming months. For more information on St Mary’s Ecochurch please contact us and we'll pass your message on.

If you have a wildlife project that just needs a helping hand to get started, get in touch with us.


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