Volunteers laying wildflower seeded compost in Crabrain Gully 11/5/21 © David Walsh
Gully raised bed before wildflower seeded soil © David Walsh
Gully after wildflower seeded compost put down © David Walsh
Gully raised bed with Nature Ninjas © David Walsh


Our Nature Ninjas have been busy!  Over the past few weeks we have been installing various plug plants in sites across Cumbernauld.  The Ninjas have also laid down 50 metres squared of wildflower seeded earth. These works should bring a sea of colourful wildflowers in the years ahead.

One site that has been a particular joy to perform these works is in Carbrain Gully.  This Gully consists of a path leading down to the train station from the town centre that bisects Carbrain.  This area has a grand walkway with a huge bridge crossing the gully.  It feels like a real hub of the community, with many members of the public always curious and readily wanting to converse with us as we work here.

Last year we cut and lifted the meadow sections of the verge running along the path.  What an impact it has had!  This specialised cutting process has aided the growth of wildflower species.  We are already seeing a confluence of primroses, sorrel, and vetch popping up.  There has been  a spectacular surge of cowslip bursting out as well.  It is one of the best sites in Cumbernauld to see this charismatic flower at its bright yellow best!  We aim to further help the wildflowers by doing one more cut and lift in October.

We have also undertaken a huge operation to lay a ton of wildflower seeded compost into one of the gigantic, raised beds in the gully.  This has been a long process: rotavating the soil, cutting out the overgrowth and relocating beech saplings.  We then had to wheel 40 wheelbarrows of soil – over the bridge, down a hill and finally up to the bed.  This layer of soil will firmly establish a thick layer of soil for wildflowers to flourish.  We should start to see the first flowers appearing at the end of June.

It was hard work.  The volunteers found it especially rewarding.  They are starting to see the fruits of their labours within the gully.  If you would like to get involved with our volunteer groups, please get in contact with David at d.walsh@tcv.org.uk.

Postscript: Local residents and volunteers are heartbroken to find that vandals have trashed a new area of wildflowers that they have recently planted in Carbrain Gully. The vandals pulled out wooden posts and scattered them over the planting area, trampled the soil, and littered the site. The damage was discovered by one of our Wild Ways Well family groups who were visiting the site and were really upset to see the place vandalised. The area will be repaired and replanted as soon as possible. Let’s hope the people that did the damage realise that they are harming their own community most by acting like this – and respect the area in the future.

Cumbernauld LL