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Thursday, 24 July 2008

Wed 23rd July 2008 - Cowes County Primary School.

Our third visit to Cowes County Primary this year, saw us presented with a variety of tasks. The woodland area with the willow dome needed further clearing cutting back and weeding; the area round the edges ofthe fence under the horse chestnut tree needed the grass removing; footpaths also required weeding and an area which will become part of the school under the new education proposals needed overhanging tree branches removed and ground clearing for a vegetable patch.

This week's nature lesson is about 'King Alfred's cakes (see picture) also known as cramp balls and coal fungus (real name DaldiniaConcentrica). These are found on the dead branches of deciduous trees, particularly ash, but can also occur on beech and alder. Legend has it that King Alfred when hiding form the Danes once burnt some cakes and these fungal growths which look as if they have been burned, are a reminder of his poor cooking, hence the name. The black variety can be very useful for lighting fires, because the inner flesh once dried can be lit, then it burns slowly like barbeque briquettes".
Many thanks to Carrie for the editorial and the photographs this week. It sounds as though it was about the hottest GG day we have had this year....!

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