As we carry out the range of winter tasks on the Meadows I am reminded by the emergence of the first green shoots from the tansy plants that we can soon look forward to the re-emergence of last years generation of tansy beetles that we hope have successfully over-wintered underground. So far this year flooding hasn’t been a major problem and apart from some low level but long lasting inundation the site has largely remained dry.
Thanks to funding from Yorkshire Water through the intervention of Mott Macdonald Bentley we have been able to spend money on growing more tansy plants, along with having additional areas cleared ready to be fenced off before the cattle come on and eat the plants. After discussions with the UK’s experts on tansy beetles we are cutting back tree branches to allow more sunlight, and keeping back overgrowing vegetation and the like from several new patches, whilst hopefully extending planting in the existing ones.
So, weather depending, the beetles will soon be with us and hopefully will start walking to the extended habitats. So be careful where tread, if anywhere near the tansy patches.