I have been involved this spring in a wonderful volunteer project in the Arboretum … we are creating a new trail (which I won’t spoil for you here, there will be an official announcement and unveiling later in the year) and alongside it a small group of us are creating a “Garden in the Forest”. It’s a lot of fun, really, despite the complaints from my back and the ever hungry mosquitoes.
The garden is envisaged as a small “copse” that will be filled with native berry-bearing trees and shrubs to provide food for birds and other wildlife throughout the year. We have selected species that bear fruits from early summer right through the fall and some even going into winter with a good crop of food for wildlife.
The site is filled with rampant weeds and ferns so there has been a lot of hard work trying to get them out … lots more of that to be completed but today we reached a milestone in that the bushes and trees have all been planted just in time for a good overnight rain shower that will settle them in. We are taking a long term view of this project – some of the plants will grow fast and look good in the next few years while others are going to take a generation to achieve their full potential and I may not be around to see that.
Species planted are:
- American Black Cherry – that will be HUGE in 30-40 years from now 🙂
- Amelanchier canadenisis – a species of serviceberry
- Cornus alternifolia – pagoda dogwood
- Cornus stolonifera – a red-stemmed dogwood
- Viburnum lentago – nannyberry bush
- Ilex verticillata – winterberry
- Sorbus americana – rowan tree
- Sambucus canadenis – American elder
There will be further instalments here as the copse gradually takes on a more polished look – at the moment it’s very much a work in progress.
Anyway – a few pictures of three volunteers (well two, I was behind the camera) getting those plants into the good soil. Having such a lot of fun with this …