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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 25 August 2021

Wed 25th Aug 2021 - Birchmore Pond Areas. GG # 849.

A gaggle of GGmers 😀.

What was the name of that film where exactly the same thing happens every day.... ah yes "Groundhog Day".... which is much the same as our Wednesday mornings seem to be right now. As you might have guessed from the title, we were back to work on the same area of Merstone Stream as last week. It doesn't seem to matter how hard we work at pulling this pesky HB, there is plenty more to do another time 😏. The number of GGmers attending was down a little on previous week (PPP burnout..?) but around 15 of us took advantage of the pleasantly warm weather to try and make a difference.
Mark has promised us something different next week (Hooray!) and it looks as though we might be over at Millennium Green. As per usual, keep an eye on your e-mail in tray for confirmation closer to the date.

Wednesday 18 August 2021

Wed 18th Aug 2021 - Birchmore Pond Area, Blackwater. GG # 848.

Terry's Photographs. 

Surveying the pond area..we need to get back here
to do some work!

Huge swathes of pink.

Most people stand on the stream banks, NOT in it 😀

This gives an idea of just how tall HB grows.

Tea time and a team talk.

Me, taking a photo (see Bob's Photos below)

One of the many piles of pulled HB.

Perhaps we should run a "spot the person" competition?

More evidence of our labours.

Mark's Photographs.

Bob's Photographs.

A "before and after shot"of just one area we worked on.

Team GG's battle to try and eradicate Himalayan Balsam from Merstone Stream (to the south of Newport) continued into another session and this week it was even further down the valley. Because the plants are getting close to the point where the seed pods go POP, we have worked hard to remove as much as possible.... hopefully reducing the workload for future years. Although the session started in misty rain, it soon dried out but not exactly a sunny summer's day!
Having struggled, week after week, with this notoriously pesky plant, I think everyone deserves a huge pat on the back for their efforts  WELL DONE 👏.
Mark did suggest various options for next week's session but he still has to finalise the exact details so please keep an eye on your e-mail in tray.

Many thanks to Terry and Mark for the excellent photographs this week.

Wednesday 11 August 2021

Wed 11th Aug 2021 - Newclose Cricket Ground, Shide. GG # 847.

 Terry's Photographs.

Pre-session Team Talk.

Pick yourself a spot and dive in..!

No shortage of HB here.

A well earned tea break.

"Well done, but there is LOTS more to go".

A new mutation - roots at BOTH ends..!

Some of the cleared areas.

Bob's Photographs.

This week's editorial is super simple.... pulling the same pesky plant but at a new location 😏. Our campaign to rid the Shide / Blackwater valley of Himalayan Balsam continues, this week we attacked the area of land to the west of the Newclose Cricket Ground. Initially, the indications looked good, just a few pink blooms in between the other undergrowth but as we started to get deeper we found "forests of HB" 😡.  When you are pulling plants that are way taller than yourself you realise just how invasive this species really is! With around 20 Team GG members in attendance and warm sunny weather we made good progress but it is certainly an area that will be needing more attention in the non to distant future.

Many thanks to the ladies in the pavilion kitchens who supplied us with copious amounts of tea & coffee at "tea break" 👍.

As yet, no details of next week's venue so please keep an eye on your e-mail in tray for an update.

A note from Mark.
I'm forwarding a pic of the pond at Queensgate Primary, looking good!

Many thanks to Terry for his photographs and to the tea ladies for providing the refreshments.

Wednesday 4 August 2021

Wed 4th Aug 2021 - Merstone Stream, Blackwater. GG # 846.

 Terry's Photographs.

"The HB is THAT way..!"

Just in case you had forgotten what the enemy looks like.

The tea break team talk.

Getting stuck in.

Part of the session's pickings.

Nature Corner.

 A Demoiselle.....

.... and a Red Admiral.

Having just pasted the photos above, they are a bit out of sequence...we really did do some work BEFORE tea break 😂.
Although we parked at a new location this week, the job was just the other side of the cycle path and stream from where Stone Farm is (See GG # 843 from a couple of weeks ago). When Mark did the site visit, a few weeks ago, he didn't think there would be enough HB to keep us all busy for a whole session... how wrong could he be..! With plenty of Team GG in attendance, we soon got stuck into plucking the "pink peril" from all along the western banks of Merstone Stream. For most of the time, the stream was just a little shallower than the British Standard Welly Boot but several GGmers found deeper spots which resulted in a boot full of water 😒. Little by little we are s  l  o  w  l  y working our way along the valley in an attempt to rid it of this pesky plant. Next week we continue the campaign and will be working at the Newclose Cricket Ground (details will be confirmed by email closer to the time).

Many thanks to Terry for the photographs this week.