In a bid to boost the numbers of bees, butterflies, and other insects that play an important role in our ecosystem, the council partnered with the Worcester Environmental Group to reduce the frequency of grass verge cutting at some locations and introducing new techniques to encourage more wildflowers to flourish in areas across the city. Strips of grass continued to be cut around the borders of wildflower areas.
The result is an abundance of wildflowers at sites such as Dugdale Drive in Warndon Villages, where an information board and QR coded posts have been installed, allowing people to find out more about the species they spot. These include Bush Vetch; Red Clover; Wild Carrot and Herb Robert.
“Worcester City Council declared a Biodiversity Emergency in 2020, because we recognise that action needs to be taken immediately to stop the decline of our native species. The success of Dugdale Drive shows us that with a change in mowing practices, we can turn barren grass verges into vibrant natural habitats for our native wildflowers and insects. They not only look beautiful, but they also support bees and other insects which pollinate plants and provide food to our native birds.” explains Cllr Andy Stafford, Chair of Worcester City Council’s Environment Committee.
“Encouraging more wildflowers to grow is a small but important step to help protect the natural environment. I’m delighted to see the wildflower information board installed at Dugdale Drive; it’s really important that residents understand why we’re taking this action.” Said Warndon Parish South councillor Andy Roberts.
The authority also planted wildflowers at several new sites this year, with different mixes of wildflowers planted at each location to create a variety of species and colours. Soil type, soil fertility, shading, exposure to the sun, driver visibility and accessibility are all considered when new locations are selected. The council intend to expand the programme to more sites in the future.
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