3.1 Wildflower Meadows, Pasture & Verges
This project aims to establish a local Meadows Management Group to encourage best practice in conserving and enhancing species rich grassland.
The flower rich grasslands and mires are some of the most important habitats surviving in the Stiperstones & Corndon Hill Country area. They range from wet flushes associated with springs emanating from the hills through to traditional hay meadows. Many of these habitats are the surviving remnants of larger areas that have been lost to agricultural improvement, and are intrinsically linked with the mining and small farm heritage of the area. Much of the botanical interest of the area is limited to these small extensively managed grasslands, mires and road verges. This project also seeks to maintain extensive grazing and haymaking as part of the cultural heritage of the area.
Helping wildlife and wildflower meadows, working to join up the best sites into a wildlife-rich landscape by:
- Helping meadow owners to manage flower rich grasslands and connected habitats sympathetically
- Encouraging restored and new meadows, as well as connected wet and marshy areas
- Using roadside verges as wildlife corridors to join up the richest sites into a wildlife-friendly landscape
- A new group for meadow owners, to share knowledge and equipment, get advice and training, small grants where needed
- Landowners restoring or creating new wildflower meadows and areas on their land
- Discovering, surveying, recording wildflowers and other important species
- Communities ‘adopting’ their local roadside verge
- Researching new uses and economic value for meadows and their products
- Marketing products from meadows such as hay, seeds, ‘green’ hay, honey
For more information and to get involved please contact John (JP) Brayford.
Follow the links for project updates and resources:
This project has enabled local residents with meadows to form the Meadow Management Group. Through networking and training events members share their experiences and knowledge about wildflower meadows, hay-making, grazing, local contractors and using small machinery. This year we are purchasing a small tractor and hay making machinery for members of the Meadow Management Group to use and to contract out. If you own or manage grassland in the Scheme area and want to know the benefits of joining the Group, take a look from ‘A Smallholder’s Perspective‘ – written by Richard Small, Meadow Management Group
During the first year of the Scheme we have been laying the groundwork for this projects, which has included producing some guidance materials on meadow management, starting visits to meadow owners to advise on management. Possible sites have also been identified for meadow restoration work during Summer 2014. JP Brayford, our Countryside Officer, can advise meadow owners on management and support, green hay spreading and soil and plant surveys where appropriate. We are also developing a Meadow Management Group to share best practice, learning and networking between local meadow owners..