I walked Melba along this section of the path yesterday and thought two hours would be nowhere near enough time - the plant really has taken over.
I rode up to the meeting area about 11ish so I could do at least an hour's work. I wore jeans and a long sleeved bicycle jersey in order to avoid being nettled. That worked, but it was a pretty hot morning.
Upon arriving I was asked to fill in a short questionnaire about how I found out about the event, preferred communication from the council (Twitter, website, leaflets, newspaper etc) and my reasons for volunteering. As I said in my last post, I commute along here a majority of the week so it felt right to give something back.
|Full trailer of pulled rosebay|
|Where the group had been working before the wasps got angry|
I set about working about half way down the bank, which was quite steep. After around 10 minutes I felt something sharp on my neck. I thought I'd been nettled.
Another two minutes more of pulling weeds and it was apparent I'd disturbed a wasps' nest as they were swarming about and started stinging me and another gentleman. One flew into his glove and he received a few stings on his wrist. I was stung on the wrist, neck, ear and one lodged itself in my hair and started to sting my head. This was hurting quite a lot and it was difficult to scramble up the embankment swatting wasps away.
We moved a lot further down the path to an area where there isn't as many large bushes, trees or wasps and set to work again. There is a bench overlooking a nice view here so it was a good area to clean up. I was hesitant after the wasp incident but I soon got back into it. We worked for about another 30 minutes before packing up and heading back to the meeting point.
|Pulling the rosebay out|
|You can see the bench in the distance with the rosebay on both sides of the path|
|The rosebay patch we were going to tackle|
|After we'd finished - looks much better!|
I was given a brochure which contained more information on the council countryside service and what they do, as well as a leaflet telling me about volunteering. I'd do it again in the future as the staff were helpful, friendly and very knowledgeable.
If you would like to find out some more you can:
- Email the service on this address: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: 0191 372 9103
- Find them on Facebook