When we took on the field the boundaries were mainly full of dead elm and ivy, we have cleared this and re-planted a hedge with over 100 trees, including hawthorn, hazel, birch, wild pear, guelder rose, holly, hornbeam, walnut, rowan, spindleberry, field maple and wild service, plus wild hop, sweet bryony, several honeysuckle and dog rose. We discoverd a lone wych-elm in the hedge and have successfully grown a seedling which we donated to the Wychwood Project’s Foxburrow wood near Witney.
Wildlife we have seen in the walls, hedges and margins include grass snakes, frogs, toads, hedgehogs, tortoise-shell, red admiral, and orange tip butterfly and many species of wild bee; we have visiting kestrels, barn owls, often hear tawny owls, and regularly see pipistrelle bats, red kites, buzzards, ravens, swallows, swifts, martins, house sparrow, blackbird, dunnock, song thrush, blue tit, great tit, robin, jackdaw, collared dove, wood pigeon, wren, chiff-chaff, chaffinch, greenfinch, bullfinch and goldfinch, there is a colony of rooks in the trees above the bees (who enjoy trying to steal the crops!).
We have repaired small sections of dry-stone wall around the edge of the field, leaving valuable habitat as undisturbed as possible.
We’ve provided a home to 3 hives of bees from Wagon Wheel Cottage Honey and are encouraging wild flowers to grow nearby, as well as growing flowering plants bees love for their nectar.