After an afternoon downpour the sky appeared to be dry and the volunteers gathered to start trimming around the tansy plants on the bank of the New Meadow that had been gated off to keep the cattle out whilst the Tansy Beetles were active. With Judi, Sarah, Masha, Mark, Pete and Mick clearing competing vegetation, we were then joined by Gareth Barlow of BBC Radio York to whom we showed the plants and beetles, and described the work that had been carried out over 26 years.
The last few years of cutting back vegetation has created a much light sward around the many tansy plants with few invasive species, meaning that in 2017 we can probably reduce the sessions down to two each at the main locations and add some new locations such as the banks of Blue Beck, the section near the cattle grid or that along the Ings Dyke.
As Gareth chatted to us, the sky darkened and the rain returned with a vengeance. An early end to the work party but the years of careful management had left us in a situation where it didn’t really matter.
The next Friends of Rawcliffe Meadows work parties Sunday will be on Sundays 4th and 11th September from 10:30 at the Cornfield (north of site).