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Blog Archive

IoW GG links

To look at the Isle of Wight Green Gym web page (contains details of sessions etc) please use the following link :-

The link to Twitter is

If you would like to leave us any comments then please use this link

Wednesday 26 February 2020

Wed 26th Feb 2020 - Mill Copse, Yarmouth. GG # 822.

Terry's Photographs.

The location details.

Let the coppicing begin...

Teddy bears picnic..? Oh no...tea break 😃

What a team effort.

Neat..but rather huge habitat piles.
(perhaps for hibernating grizzly bears..?)

Although the day started cold, it was lovely to see the sun again. Having parked up in the town car park ( FOUR pounds for 4 hours 😏) it was a nice stroll along the banks of the River Yar, past the old mill house to Mill Copse. Mark decided that the van would have problems with the mud if he tried to get up the track so it was left down at the bottom. Grab some tools...head to the woods and start coppicing to make a clearing - thereby encouraging the lower ground cover plants to thrive in their new found sunlight. Soon the woods were reverberating with the shouts of T-I-M-B-E-R as one by one, the clumps of hazel tumbled to the forest floor. Any useful material (straight and around 6 foot long) was piled separately for future use but the majority of the cuttings were grouped into habitat piles (as photographed above). Attendance for this session was particularly good - perhaps because it had FINALLY stopped raining?

Nature Note.

No...not an ancient cannon ball but a fungus called King Alfred's Cakes (Daldinia concentrica), poisonous to humans despite the name.

Thanks to Terry for the photographs and to Sue for the "cannon ball" research.

Wednesday 19 February 2020

Wed 19th Feb 2020 - Afton Marsh LNR (South), Freshwater. GG # 821.

Terry's Photographs.

Bob's Photographs.

The start of a roaring fire.

According to Mark's notes for the day, Team GG has visited this venue some 22 times before - although not recently. Perhaps we could have chosen a better day for our triumphant return as it was raining for almost all the session ☂. Trying to keep the willow shrubs under control in this marsh is an ongoing battle and we were tasked to "process" some of the piles that had previously been cut and to remove a few more thickets that were in our way. Getting a bonfire going with damp the rain... is something of a challenge but once it was finally established then we managed to clear a lot of material. Needless to say, working in a marsh with the amount of rainfall we have endured recently is rather difficult but everyone got back to the road safe and sound. Well done Team GG..!

Many thanks to Terry for taking the photographs this week.

Wednesday 12 February 2020

Wed 12th Feb 2020 - Quarr Abbey, Fishbourne/Binstead. GG # 820

Cutting our way in to find the stream.

Tea break and CAKE..👍

A part of the area we cleared.

It was just over one month ago that Team GG were at Quarr Abbey - this week we had a chance to tackle some more of the rather overgrown water course. Initially it was hacking down the bramble and undergrowth to LOCATE the stream then to cut back everything on either bank and dredge any fallen material. Even with all the correct protective equipment, it is amazing just how many scratches and puncture wounds you pick up along the way..! This week we were spoilt at tea was held in a lovely woodland setting and there was plenty of amazing cakes to help restore our energy levels. This was a well attended session in fine weather and excellent progress was made with the assigned task...well done everyone!

Many thanks to Terry and Jeff for the excellent cakes.

Wednesday 5 February 2020

Wed 5th Feb 2020 - Arreton Down. GG # 819.

As we arrive...the early cloud starts to clear.

Just a part of the L..O..N..G walk to the worksite.

Eventually we arrived - along with the tools.

Getting stuck-in..!

Tea break on a rather steep slope.

Part of the area we cleared.

Mark's Photographs.

This week we were supposed to be working at the Sandown Meadows site...but the following e-mail from Mark will explain all.....

As mooted last week we have a change this Wednesday. We will now be up on Arreton Down doing some scrub removal rather than the Sandown Meadows site. Several factors, the road is closed along Longwood Lane in Adgestone on Wednesday, and also the Morton Common alternative is still flooded. Will we ever make it there you may ask! to the TOP of the Downs it was but as it turned out, the area we were working on was at the BOTTOM of the Downs and at the other end to where the car park was (who said that GG sessions had to be easy..?😏) Due to a frosty start, everyone had turned up with multiple layers of clothing - the top layers of which were soon to be discarded as the sun showed through and work got underway. Once again, the brief was easy "cut everything down then pile it up for future use" (as dead hedging). A good deal of scrub was chopped back but I imagine that there will be a few sore calf muscles, come tomorrow morning, from working on the steep hillside...!

As a matter of interest....there is yet another scheduled visit to work at Sandown Meadows on the 4th March - 4th time lucky..????

Many thanks to Mark for his photographic contribution this week.