(Above) Trays to be planted into the lawn (below) Volunteers planting
(below) The lawn taking shape (below) Close-up of the lawn © Sally Welbourn
On a sunny Easter Monday, volunteers met at the Borough Gardens in Dorchester to plant the UK’s first ever community grass free lawn. Over 1,000 seed trays have been grown by volunteers since September 2014, in preparation for the planting day.
People from all over the community took part, from individuals, families, schools to community groups, including Weldmar, Cowden Care Farm and Whitfield Future Roots Centre. The result is a patchwork of flowering plants, rather than grass, which is hugely beneficial to wildlife.
This type of lawn is fantastic for pollinating insects
Joy Wallis, is leading on the project for DWT. She said: "Research suggests that this type of lawn is fantastic for pollinating insects and all sorts of other wildlife. It needs no chemical additives, produces many more flowers than a grass lawn and there will be something in flower all year round. There’s also a bonus for us, as it’s nicer to look at and requires far less maintenance than a traditional turf lawn. We hope that people will visit the gardens and feel inspired to try it themselves at home!”
We look forward to seeing colourful flowers nearly all year round!
The project has been supported by Dorchester Town Council, and the Mayor, Peter Mann, announced this project to be the subject of the Mayoral Appeal 2015/15.
He said: "This exciting and innovative project has involved a wide range of community groups and individuals in planting up seed trays and now helping to plant the Grass Free Lawn. I very much look forward to seeing colourful flowers nearly all the year round and increasing numbers of bees and butterflies and other pollinating insects."
Another planting day needed...
There are still some trays left to plant, so we'll be holding another grand planting day in May 2015. Dates and times to follow! If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Joy Wallis on 01305 264620. For more information about gardening for wildlife, visit our wildlife gardening pages. Also, find out more about entering the Wildlife Friendly Gardening compeition 2015!
This project is supported by Dorset Wildlife Trust (DWT) Dorchester Town Council, The Gardens Group and The Heritage Lottery Fund.