Each year Glendale staff meet with Nick Pond, Lewisham’s Ecological Regeneration Manager and members of the Friend’s group to draw up a new maintenance plan for maintenance of the bank-side vegetation. Certain areas are cut and collected by Glendale approximately every six weeks during the growing season, some areas left for an annual cut in late summer and some areas worked on by volunteer groups.
2012 -Volunteers have been hard at work by the riverside. Nature’s Gym and Rivers and People Projects have concentrated their work on particular areas in an effort to keep the nettles and other vigorous plants in check. They have also thinned out some of the self seeded willows so the river should be more visible this year. A wide variety of wild plants can be seen coming up in these areas. The lesser celandine looks so bright and delicate and, If you fancy a tasty addition to your salad, why not pick a few garlic mustard leaves to add a tang. There are plenty of them growing on the bankside. (see photos below)
These two photos, taken in March and June 2011, show the growth of vegetation in a short time. Volunteers working with “Rivers and People” and Nature’s Gym” have worked hard to manage and control the growth in targeted areas on the river banks. In this way it is hoped that less vigorous plants will be encouraged to flourish.
New volunteers are always welcome to join the regular work sessions which take place through the year (check for dates on the web links).The river banks are very nutrient rich as vegetation is washed down stream and deposited in the meadows. Some plants, such as nettles, thrive in this environment and need to be controlled.