CYMRAEG

Resilient Green Spaces - Greener Corridors and Spaces

untitled_1800_x_924px.png

The Greener Corridors and Spaces strand of Resilient Green Spaces aims to empower communities to take control of their public green spaces so they are better connected for nature and people. Social Farms and Gardens, in partnership with Gwynedd Council, will support communities to manage verges and other public green spaces (such as parts of community centre grounds or parks) as meadow habitat.

Verges can have huge wildlife value! There are hundreds of miles of road verge across Gwynedd that, if managed appropriately, can provide interconnected wildlife corridors across the county supporting a wealth of wildlife including plants, bees, butterflies, bats and reptiles.
   
Gwynedd Council has a duty to maintain the highway network so that it is safe to use and free from obstructions. The process for this involves grass-cutting on verges that are essential to maintaining visibility, such as at junctions, laybys and the inside of bends.  Although hedge management is the responsibility of the adjacent landowner, Gwynedd Council also cut some hedges in visibility areas. Wildlife Management is also needed if we want to maintain verges as wildflower habitats.  

Plantlife has produced a guide to verge management which sets out four management principles:

1.    Annual management is essential (coarse vegetation will develop if grass is left uncut for one year. Over time uncut verges turn into scrub and woodland).
2.    Grow, flower, seed, mow (plants need to grow, flower and set seed in order to thrive). 
3.    Remove the cuttings (grass cuttings smother plants and increase soil fertility).
4.    Mixing it up (a mix of long grass, short grass, scrub and woodland will support more species).

On the verges outside towns and villages, Gwynedd Council have changed their cutting regime to follow Plantlife’s guidance as closely as possible – although the removal of cuttings is still a difficulty as there is just so much material!  They are also cutting a ‘visibility strip’ of 1m more regularly – which makes the verges look cared for and is also important for safety.  
 
However, within towns and villages the cutting regime is different – cutting happens much more often to allow people to safely walk on the verges and because it looks tidier.  There are some verges and other green spaces in communities that are suitable for managing for wildlife - and that’s where you come in!

Resources

Community management of road verges and other community green spaces is essential if we want to maintain and maximise their wildlife value. If you would like to get involved, we’ve put together some frequently asked questions and guidance to get you started. 

You may also find these Plantlife resources on how to identify flowers and make meadows useful:

#NoMowMay

Throughout the month of May we were encouraging groups and councils to take part in #NoMowMay - campaign research has revealed that mowing your lawn less frequently can provide enough nectar sugar for ten times the amount of bees, butterflies, moths, beetles and other pollinators. Last year's #NoMowMay results showed that gardeners who took part reported up to 250 species of plants, including wild garlic, wild strawberry, declining orchids and the rare meadow flower snakeshead fritillary, flowering within the grasses.

Read some #NoMowMay stats below:

no_mow_may.png

Get involved

If you'd like to get involved, fill in this contact form and send to the workstream leads (email addresses below).

If you’d like more information, please contact one of the workstream leads:
 
SF&G: sarah@farmgarden.org.uk 
Gwynedd Council: hywynwilliams@gwynedd.llyw.cymru

About Resilient Green Spaces

Building a National Allotment Development Team is one of six strands of work in the Resilient Green Spaces project. See our Resilient Green Spaces overview to find out more. 

Resilient Green Spaces is funded through the Welsh Government Rural Communities - Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the Welsh Government and the European Union.

rgs_partners_banner_2_lines_4_1.png

CLAS Wales

Curabitur quis augue ac felis eleifend scelerisque in at nisi. Praesent non fermentum massa. Nam auctor luctus augue, eu lobortis risus ultricies ut.

Events

Includes our own training events and workshops, and selected events and training run by organisations in the sector we think might be relevant. We aim to share the buzz and keep you informed.