Green Fingered Children Get Their Hands Dirty

To help transform derelict paddling pool area in Dukes Meadows

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Duke Meadows Trust


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Children from Cavendish Primary School got their hands dirty and helped transform the old derelict paddling pool area in Dukes Meadows into a wildflower garden.

Enthusiastic despite the chilly weather, the Year 4 pupils, overseen by Deputy Head Mick Flaherty, turned up on two mornings in March and planted around 2000 plug plants in the sandy soil. The plants include Birdsfoot trefoil, Sorrel, Oxeye daisies, Yarrow, Plantain, Cowslip, Lady’s bedstraw, Campion, Selfheal, Mallows, Buttercups and Cornflower.

The wildflower plug plants were originally potted up in the Chiswick House Kitchen Garden by children from St Mary’s Primary School, supervised by Nicky Milligan from Kitchen Garden Association. The garden will be completed over the spring with the arrival of new benches, a gate and an information board.

The wildflower garden is being created with the help of a Breathing Places lottery grant and Barratt Homes. The project was initiated by environmental charity Dukes Meadows Trust in partnership with CiP whose ecologist Chris Slack provided expertise on creating the right habitat to encourage wildflowers and insects. Barratt provided and transported gravel from its Great West Quarter site in Brentford. The gravel is from excavations in the old river bed, so the material is typical of the kind of habitat that existed on the banks of the Thames and is ideal for a wildflower garden.

Taina Peltonen, Development Manager at Dukes Meadows Trust, said “we are very grateful to Cavendish School for helping out with the planting, and Barratt for providing the gravel in the first place. The derelict paddling pools are well on their way to turning into a place that is great for wildlife and enjoyable for the local community. We also thank St Mary’s School, CiP, the Kitchen Garden Association and of course the Lottery.”

The wildflower garden will be opened to the public later this year, once the plants have had time to become established.

March 28, 2008