The Wild Flower Meadows of Treworgey Manor

 

We have had the unique experience of being invited to the beautiful Treworgey Manor to observe 40 acres of wild flower meadows being planted from seed. In the last few months it’s been touch and go whether the crop would survive due to the recent and lengthy heatwave directly after sowing. Although the plans started a little late for various reasons, it wasn’t known at the time that this year would have been the hottest and driest for decades.

 

Treworgey Manor offers a beautiful destination for tourism in South East Cornwall with ample grounds to appreciate. Much of the land is agricultural and the owners wanted to create a solution to benefit all with its future management. Instead of grazing or crops they have chosen to support the vital needs of the environment, helping pollinators and other insects we so desperately need to flourish. In turn the guests of Treworgey get to appreciate the rolling hills around the Manor covered in wild flower habitat.

Since the 1930’s we have lost 97% of wild flower meadows. This is the equivalent of 7.5 million acres of meadow and wild habitat in the UK destroyed within that time. Treworgey Manor are increasing the vitality for both nature and us. A perfect place where you can coexist with nature and relax in luxury at the same time. Two things that would not normally go hand in hand.

Whilst we waited in anticipation over the following weeks for the wild flowers to grow, only the relentless and previously established fat hen grew and smothered the landscape. The owners of the Manor topped the fat hen twice in June and July in an attempt to give the seeds the conditions they needed to push on through. Week after week went by until finally in early August it rained…. and rained some more.

sanfoinForty acres of seed finally dominating the fat hen with an abundance of Clovers, Sanfoin, Purple Vipers Buglos, Fumitories, Yarrow, Teasel and smartweeds to name a few, which have all established themselves and started to flower in mid August. As it turns out, the great news from all this touch and go, is that the originally undesired late sowing saved this entire crop from the heatwave. If the 40 acres had been sown any earlier, the young seedlings would not have survived the drought and the 40 acres would have needed sowing once again.

walk in the meadowWe will be keeping a close eye on the meadows, looking at which species prevail whilst we can also use our observations for any future anticipated heatwaves in the UK.

 

About the author: Angie Cruse

As well as working hard on the ground here in the UK, Angie has spent ample time volunteering in conservation abroad and continually studies habitat management in conservation.

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