Nature lovers visit new wildlife garden in Oxfordshire

nature lovers visit new wildlife garden in oxfordshire

Nature lovers visited the new wildlife garden at Sutton Courtenay Environmental Education Centre for a free open day on Saturday, June 3. The garden, which uses recycled materials, features a raised pond, native fruit and vegetables, and toad abodes. (Image: Ed Nix)

Nature lovers visited the new wildlife garden at Sutton Courtenay Environmental Education Centre for a free open day on Saturday, June 3.

The garden, which features a raised pond, native fruit and vegetables, and toad abodes, uses recycled materials and pollinator planting.

The horticultural haven, which was created with help from Oxford garden designer Laura Heybrook and Oxfordshire’s Freshwater Habitats Trust, aims to inspire visitors of all ages and show how easy it is to help wildlife.

The garden has three borders showing different techniques:

The first is packed full of spring bulbs, pollinator-friendly flowers, shrubs, and plants that will provide berries and seeds for wildlife in winter.

Water butts harvest run-off from the centre’s green roof and a raised pond creates habitat for insects like dragonflies and amphibians such as newts.

The second border has been landscaped with raised beds made out of natural, recycled and reused materials from old bricks to logs, and is now bursting into life with organically-grown herbs and vegetables.

The third border has been planted with soft fruit bushes such as blackcurrants, raspberries, gooseberries and rhubarb. Throughout the garden there are bug hotels, solitary bee residences, bird feeders, bird baths, toad abodes and hedgehog holes.

The Sutton Courtenay centre, run by Berkshire, Buckinghamshire & Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (BBOWT), is usually only open only to booked groups.

Staff are looking for more volunteers to help them manage the new feature.

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