Following the visit from Louise Galloway and Andy Ensoll in March, there has been quite a bit of progress. An action plan has been drawn up and approved, and work has started on clearing weeds and invasive perennials. Where possible we are using biological controls for pests, so nematodes to combat vine weevil have been watered in over the entire soil area – most of a day’s work. One of the main challenges is to keep the fernery adequately watered, and a new lance acquired by the Botanic Gardens Community Association makes it possible to target the watering, so that the roots are watered but the crowns are not left soggy.
Invasive perennials have taken over large areas – for example, the Angiopteris evecta was almost obscured by Asparagus, now mostly removed by Sandra – thank you! Many planting pockets were occupied by umbrella grass – Michael and Sandra have made a good start on weeding this out, not an easy task. When we could see some pockets at last, we couldn’t resist transplanting a small Pteris that had been hidden behind other plants – and recording the first new planting. Aluminium plant has also grown out of control, so bit by bit we are reducing this too.
Lots more weeding to be done, before we can refresh the compost in the planting areas and start replanting in earnest. If you live near to Southport, and think you would be able to help, please email firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can keep you informed of future working days in the Fernery.