Growing for Garnock
WANTED: VOLUNTEERS INTERESTED IN FINDING RARE AND THREATENED NATIVE PLANTS IN NORTH AYRSHIRE!
We are looking for volunteers to help with our rare plant hunt in North Ayrshire as part of our Growing for Garnock project. We have selected a range of target species from the Ayrshire Rare Plant Register which are found in the Garnock Connections area. Ultimately we will be looking to collect seed for propagation and then planting on various project sites to extend their range. Please get in touch if you are interested. The list together with details, descriptions and locations where available together with a field record form is here:
PLEASE ADHERE TO THE CODE OF CONDUCT FOR WILDFLOWERS WHICH CAN BE FOUND HERE
Garnock Connections (GC) is an HLF funded Landscape Partnership project across the Garnock Valley in Renfrewshire and North Ayrshire led by RSPB. You can read more about it here.
Growing for Garnock is a project designed and being delivered by Eadha as part of GC. The project focuses on wildflower meadows and riparian woodland habitats have been identified as key habitats in the Garnock Connections area and are priorities for habitat improvement work.
The project is enabling Eadha to expand its range of target species grown in its specialist nursery to include a range of wildlflowers, shrubs and plants. This project offers an opportunity to engage people with a range of different backgrounds, some with issues and special needs, in the discovery of and learning about nature, and to be involved in practical conservation work.
Eadha is working working with a wide range of groups and organisations in the “social sector”, local primary schools and youth groups to instill an interest and awareness of nature in participants who may have limited connection at present, providing new skills and learning. The project aims to connect participants to their local environment to promote a sense of pride and stewardship. For young people, the project encapsulates the four capacities for learning – Effective Contributors, Responsible Citizens, Successful Learners and Confident Individuals. It also promotes Health & Well Being and Outdoor Learning.
The project will also lead to direct habitat improvements at various sites within the project area by enhancement planting.
Eadha is supervising and leading visits to key habitat sites within the project area where participants learn about the native plants found there including their identification and their traditional uses. This has included linking up with REMODE to deliver botanical drawing and print/dye workshops. Seeds and cuttings are being collected in follow up visits for propagation at Eadha’s nursery or at schools.
Participants will then be involved in planting the resulting plugs they have propagated at various sites across the project area to enhance biodiversity.
The species list for plants collected and propagated during 2019/2020 is below:
We thought it would be interesting and useful to make a list of all the species which we have identified and are looking to propagate and then record the Scots names for all of these as well as any local names attached to these. In doing so we hope to help preserve local cultural identity.
The full plant list can be downloaded here:
Please contact us if you are able to help.
Watch our Tree Folklore Film Here:
Download our Growing for Garnock education pack here:
Quotes from Particpants from Hewlett Packard Enterprises
“In addition to actually planting the trees, supporting EADHA in their projects has allowed me to meet with colleagues in a safe environment, something I haven’t been able to do since March 2021. Peter also takes the time to educate us on the importance of trees to the landscape and the fact there should be more than fir trees in Scotland. Based on this, and further advice from Peter I’ve now planted a few Scottish species in my garden!”
“The tree planting sessions have been a great way to spend our wellness Fridays. It was a chance to meet up with colleagues in a safe environment, we got some exercise in a great setting and learned a lot about the science behind rewilding while doing our bit towards addressing the climate emergency. I also point out to anyone who will listen that “I helped plant those trees” every time I pass any of the sites we’ve worked on”
“Supporting Peter in the Growing for Garnock project has provided us a great opportunity to meet and catch up with friends and work colleagues in safe outdoor spaces whilst we are being directed to work from home during the covid pandemic of the last 18 months or so. We learned a great deal about the importance of riparian woodland restoration to support thriving natural habitats along the river Garnock. We also learned that rewilding, restoration, whatever you want to call it, is about much more than just planting trees; ground species such as shrubs and wildflowers also need to be reintroduced to habitats, and critically, that local people need to be involved in this work!”