Author Archive

The Sheep Island is getting a makeover!




Woodland Strip at Wrekin Avenue.

Since NIB volunteers started work at Wrekin Avenue Play Area in 2016, we have seen the Woodland Strip at the back of Ford Road cul-de-sac becoming more and more overgrown with brambles so strong that they are bringing down tree branches, Birds nest and feed. For this reason we wanted to act before this Woodland area became lost to them. Working together with T&W, we have spent time this January clearing away the brambles and nettles from the centre front, leaving ivy at both ends for wildlife. No trees have been removed, only dead branches together with some trimming at the front by T&W to facilitate mowing.

Gaps left by removing the overgrown brambles will be planted with wildlife friendly shrubs and the grass will re-grow across the front restoring the Woodland Area to its former size.

This has been ideal work to do in cold weather and we are grateful to all the residents of Ford Road and Leigh Road who have let us fill their Green Bins.

The finished result should show by the summer when the trees are green again and the shrubs starting to grow.


Christmas has come to Newport…….



Blooming Buddies Blog – Summer 2019 Update ………

The well established bed under 2 trees by the canal shows how successful Right Plant – Right Place can be. In deep, dry shade this bed is currently glowing with white cyclamen and is just as beautiful as the white hellebores were in spring.

Nearby, the small triangular bed between the sandstone bridge, black metal hand rail and brick steps was recently replanted with structural plants to suit their position. These plants have filled out over the summer and the red hot pokers are having a second flowering at the moment.

Blooming Buddies are now turning their attention to enhancing the edges of the tow path with rocks and appropriate planting for a south facing border in front of a hedge. We are raiding our own gardens for plants.


Sheep Island Update …….

As everyone is aware, we were going to tidy up the Sheep Island as the yellow rattle had not survived the hot summer of 2018 and this year was totally overgrown.

The Island and it’s planting has always been ahead of it’s time but now it is bang on trend. More public awareness and the highlighting and understanding of wild flower meadows on Countryfile and Gardener’s World will make it more popular with Newport locals!!

The aim was always to have the sheep grazing in a wild flower meadow but it is one of the hardest things to achieve. The yellow rattle ( like a dead nettle) is a parasitic plant which feds on grass roots enabling the wild flowers to multiply and not be suffocated by aggressive grasses.

The island has undergone two cut and collects but because of the rain, the grass has continued to grow very aggressively. Adrian, Stuart, Ray and other volunteers hand raked the thatch from the grass, a very hard job. We were unable to sow the yellow rattle seed and so last Sunday Roy who works for the Town Council hand mowed the Island and collected up the grass. It had stripes!!


Memorial Update ………..

After 3 attempts to tidy up the Memorial, we finally got a window today before it started to rain again!
We pruned the shrubs, cleaned the borders and collected a green bin full of leaves from off the borders. Michael also got all the moss and weeds out of the paving. Well done “Station Roaders”!!

That’s it now until Spring!


**A message from Barbara – RHS Community Champion**

A happy snap to celebrate achievements in Bloom 2019. Thanks to the whole Blooming Buddy team for your good company and hard work throughout the year.


Newport in Bloom is bringing home a GOLD!!

What an achievement….! Well.done to all of our volunteers who work so hard and a big thank you to everyone who supports us!


Britain in Bloom 2019 Award Ceremony, London……

Three of our committee members (Jenny, Maggie & Karen) put Newport on the Map in London on 26th October 2019!


GOLD for Newport in Bloom (Heart of England in Bloom Competition)……….