Despite the winter, the Blooming Milford volunteers have been busy on projects since the last update in November.
In January we chopped down the perennials and cleared the leaves off The Triangle, to get it ready for the spring bulb display. Visitors will have already noticed the snowdrops under the apple tree and the sprouting daffodils. The hellebore in our new planter by the Children’s Play Area pelican crossing is looking good at present, as are the tete-a-tete daffodils and snowdrops in the play area itself we planted in previous years, as shown in the pictures below.
In February, earlier than the expected April date, the two new benches we’d ordered from Bolsover Forest Enterprises were installed by them in the riverside meadow of Hopping Mill Meadow, now bringing the total to six.
In February we continued to enhance the Spring Garden in Hopping Mill Meadow, planting more aconites, bluebells and dog tooth violets. We also planted more tete-a-tete bulbs on the other side of the path to the Spring Garden. The garden is now looking quite colourful, see below.
A lot of effort was put into tidying up the area around two of our fruit trees behind the office wall near the weir. The brambles (loads) were cut back and the undergrowth hacked to the ground. The chipped bark mulch has been left there to spread round the trees once the clearance is complete.
Like many, we were shocked by the extent of the flooding of Hopping Mill Meadow when we woke up on Monday 21st February. Of particular concern was the fact our orchard near the flats had been completely submerged.
The next day when the flood waters receded, our worst fears appeared to have been confirmed. Many of the orchard trees and the orchard sign had been uprooted, several of the supporting poles snapped, and everywhere covered in a layer of flood debris. On closer inspection, thankfully, it was found that none of the trees had had their stems snapped. So they were cleaned of debris and those that had been uprooted replanted, and the sign set back up. The supporting posts were then also reset, cutting those that had been snapped down to size if necessary. Overall, thankfully, due to swift remedial work, this orchard looks to have been restored – and may even have been fertilised by the silt from the flood!
Finally, Blooming Milford has submitted the village into the East Midlands in Bloom competition again this year. The village can obviously be very proud of its gold medal in the competition last year, but it was thought that whatever medal is gained this year the camaraderie generated by preparing for it and the attractive village that results from it will be worth the entry. The judging route will be the same as last year which is Social Club – Triangle – A6 – Hopping Hill – Church Steps – GreenSpace – West Terrace – Church Steps – War Memorial – Riverside Path – The Ramp – turn left onto Millers Way – past bottom of flats and past front gardens – retrace steps then Millers Way Community Garden. As soon as the judging date is announced we will let you know, and any help in the work parties that will be organised in the run up to judgement day will be welcome. As a reminder of the effort put into preparing the village for judging for the competition last year, see the article here.