Tree planting in urban space in Sleaford helps the battle with carbon
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Funding for the site at Sheldrake Road on Quarrington Hill has come from the Forestry Commission’s Urban Tree Challenge Fund using a share of a £10 million pot to increase tree numbers in urban areas through small-scale planting projects.
The Sleaford scheme is a joint project between Hill Holt Wood, the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust and North Kesteven District Council as the 700 trees planted fit the council’s commitment to reduce the carbon footprint and increase carbon
capture, as trees absorb CO2 as they grow.
Leader of the Council, Coun Richard Wright said: “The site was chosen because it was felt more could be done with it than just grow trees. Between ourselves, Hill Holt Wood and the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust a plan was created for the site to show alternative ways of managing green space while maximising biodiversity, increasing the amount of carbon held in the area and maintaining a space for local people to use and enjoy whilst engaging with nature.”
Two benches have also been installed where the public can rest and enjoy the views and the trees have been planted inside a newly installed fenced area which also leaves room for the creation of a wildflower meadow.
The meadow area has been de-turfed to help it become established and the idea behind the work is to maximise biodiversity by creating a range of habitats including mown meadow, rough grassland, scrub mosaic and woodland.
Previously the site has mainly been a little-used patch of grass and bushes tucked away in the housing estate.
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust has been working in partnership with the Horticultural Unit at Riseholme to propagate wildflowers from seed stock collected from nature reserves in Lincolnshire and the Wildlife Trust has agreed that some of the seed can be used to ensure the area has a Lincolnshire provenance.
Hill Holt Wood Head Ranger Ben Wilson said: “We are hoping that from the works we are carrying out we will be able to demonstrate an alternative way of managing green space that provides benefits for wildlife in the local area.
“It will also be a place that people can enjoy while bringing benefits to their physical and mental wellbeing and be a carbon sink that helps to reduce our carbon footprint and be a donor site providing a yearly source of seed with
Lincolnshire provenance that could be used to replicate this work on different sites in the future.
“The benefits are already being seen as during the tree planting wild orchids were spotted on the site that would not have had the chance to grow if the area had been mown.”