After the recent spells of heavy rain it was a pleasant surprise to have such a warm and sunny start to the day. This Thursday we all worked together on the one task.
There are many specimen trees within the fenced area of the arboretum, but there are also a few which are situated in and around the top car park.
One such specimen is a majestic Blue Atlas Cedar immediately on the right as one enters the car park from Carisbrooke Road.
Unfortunately, like so many of our wonderful specimens, it has become infested with ivy, and surrounded by tall grass and other growth, so that its full beauty and majesty is hidden from view.
The day's task was to clear the surrounding area, lift the lower trailing branches and remove ivy from the trunk.
Using secateurs and a flat bladed scraper a couple of volunteers patiently worked their way around the trunk peeling away and stripping the ivy from the bark.
It is important that the bark should be visible to visitors. Tree barks are often distinctive and different and it is a useful feature of the tree to examine for identification purposes, as well as appreciating the texture and colour of the tree's trunk.
The lower branches are raised giving easier access to the tree for both grounds maintenance and viewing purposes.
All green waste produced at the arboretum is recycled. Nothing is taken off-site.
The branches that were cut are taken to the back of some of the rear borders in the arb, where they are piled up.
Here they are left to naturally decompose, whilst at the same time providing cover for small birds and animals, such as our shy muntjac deer who pass through from time to time.
All in all another good day. Fine weather, good company, tea and biscuits and a wonderful end result.
Our Blue Atlas Cedar now looks absolutely splendid and makes a terrific first impression to welcome schools, wildlife groups and the general public to our lovely arboretum.
It only remains to say a big thank you for the volunteers who make this all possible and I shall hopefully