Sunday 16 June 2013

Maintenance of The Rear Churchyard at St Margaret’s Church

The Rear Churchyard at St Margaret’s Church

St Margaret's Churchyard, Huttons Ambo
Here in Huttons Ambo we are lucky to live in a beautiful and peaceful area of Ryedale. One of the most peaceful places in our village is the churchyard. Currently Sarah Mahon mows and keeps tidy the front churchyard while for many years Clive Milson did sterling work mowing the back graveyard, a task which will always be difficult because of its size and the nettles, brambles, docks and hogweed which have colonised the area over many years.

When Clive stood down I volunteered to take responsibility for the back area. My first suggestion was that we should try to control as many of the invasive weeds as possible by only cutting the grass in July, thereby slowing growth since the more you cut it the faster the grass will grow. In addition we have over the last two years had some success in killing off the brash and planting cowslips and primroses and later some snowdrops and scillas. This policy is beginning to show signs of some success and Rona Charles and I have also scattered yellow rattle seeds in order to weaken the grass still further. However it all takes time and progress will inevitably be slow

Would anyone be interested in gathering more wild flower seeds and propagating them in order to see if we can get even more wild flowers started? However the main task each year (for the moment anyway) is raking up the hay in July or August after the grass has been cut and I would welcome any volunteers to help. It really does make an enormous difference to keeping the grass in check if we can do this.

A wildflower meadow for St Margaret's Church?
I know that I am probably being optimistic in aiming for an eventual wild flower meadow in the back Churchyard but it would be wonderful to achieve such a thing. It is such a peaceful spot and I am sure we should give it a try. I would like to think that in future years those who live here might go there to relax and maybe learn about the wild flowers which thrive hereabouts.

Do please get in touch if you have any ideas about the churchyard or if you are prepared to help in some way.

Rosa Naylor. 01653 695008

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