Our wildflower meadows
“Wildflowers meadows are an amazing habitat. A haven for wildlife that heralds the start of spring, they’re an essential part of the UK landscape that’s sadly diminishing every year
“Wildflowers provide bees, butterflies and other pollinators with food throughout the year. On a single day in summer, one acre of wildflower meadow can contain three million flowers, producing 1 kg of nectar sugar. That’s enough to support nearly 96,000 honey bees per day. Over a third of the world’s food relies on insects to pollinate them. Without insects, we’d need to artificially pollinate most of our favourite fruit and veg, which would be really time-consuming and very costly.
“Established wildflower meadows have complex root systems, which makes the soil very stable. This helps to mitigate flooding by holding on to rain water, and stops nutrients from washing away.”
Our wildflower meadows and managed areas
We have six designated areas in Vale that are our wildflower meadows where we only cut the grass up to three times during the year depending on the weather – at the beginning and end of the growing season in March and October, plus a cut and rake up in September once the wildflowers have set seed.
This helps to ensure that grass doesn’t dominate the area and gives wildflowers the chance to establish and grow. In some cases, we also plug plants or sow wildflower seeds to encourage a more diverse range of species.
If you click on following links you will be able to download the maps showing our wildflower areas:
- Abingdon – Abbey Meadow
- Cumnor – Fogwell
- Faringdon – Folly Park
- Faringdon – Follyview
- Wantage – Mably Way
- Wantage – Memorial Park
- Abingdon- Heron’s Walk
In addition, we have several sites which are managed on our behalf including Barton Fields, Tuckmill Meadows – a local nature reserve and SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) Abbey Fishponds and Besselsleigh Wood.
Across the sites we are restoring limestone grasslands, reedbeds, woodland and fen habitats and have encouraged many species including bats, otters, birds and orchids.