Yes, we have had both on campus -Jacksonville Jaguars paid us a visit last week running their Academy up at the Sports Park.Two American football pitches were marked out on the only bit of green grass we appear to have at the moment.
We also now have a beehive on campus set up, it is a student union project with a plan to produce honey, bees are very important pollinators so its great to have on site!
Here is another section of wild flowers newly sown on Site, ideal for the bees. Despite the really hot and dry conditions they still look good, hopefully people can enjoy them without having to walk through them.
Now here is a plant you may see on Campus in the buffer areas around the perimeter fencing or in the meadows on site one and four the pyramid orchid one of two orchids we have around campus.
While continuing with the bat survey came across the Brunel hedgehog queuing at the calisthenics bars, being shy it trundled off into the shrubbery nearby, lookout for our hedgehog as they tend to have no road sense.
Had to take down a couple of old white willows which had been pollarded in the past, badly rotted at the base so a high risk of failure ,not good when leaning over into the car park. Checked them out for any bat roosts luckily they were all clear so could be felled without too much hassle, replanting programme already planned.
So what’s happened here? Well the grass area was really struggling next to Mary Secole building so we’ve scarified it then sown ,with some top dressing as a carrier, an annual wildflower mix to add a bit of colour and of course food for the bees, butterflies and other such insects. Hopefully we should have a mix of colours this summer, also look out for a number of other areas sown with wild flower mixes across the campus.
The summer bedding is growing at a fair old pace at the moment in the greenhouse(3,000+ plants) especially with the great bank holiday weather! good to see the sun for a change though it does make it difficult to harden off the plants with no cold frames to use and a rather dilapidated greenhouse with poor ventilation, still planting out should be OK around the end of May.
See if you can spot this plant around campus, botanical name of Fritillaria meleagris sometimes known as the snakes-head fritillary they are in a few locations.
Smells like spring is in the air!
The spring flowering bulbs don’t know what’s going on with the sudden change in temperature and neither do the trees coming in to bud, even the overflowing guttering has frozen on the trees!