Work Days!

2016 WORKDAYS

January : The base of the new bench was established; this will allow a rest with a view at the top of the hill. This will be completed at a later date. A few groups cut back the undergrowth and saplings around the edge of the meadow.
The Welsh Bacc boys had a good workout as they dug out an area to sow red bartsia seeds. This will allow us to assess whether the flower (already present in small numbers) can be established in the meadow so that grass growth can be controlled. The soil dug out was used to start a bank to encourage wildlife e.g bumble bees.
Trees from The Conservation Volunteers were also planted nearby.
February : The Bee and Butterfly area was cleared back ready for the planting in March. The entrance in to the Nant Fawr from Rhydypenau Rd to Woods Covert was also cut back.
March: The wire around the Bee and Butterfly Border was replaced and some more seeds scattered. Invasive laurel was cut back in Rhydypenau Woods and a large area cleared behind the bus stop area on Rhydypenau Rd.
April : Bark was laid on the paths and 100 bulbs donated by Buglife were planted at one of the entrances from Rhydypenau Rd
8th May -- cancelled
June: Well, the rain stayed off! 12 volunteers turned up on this Father's Day and split into two groups. 
 The "muscles" laid bark on the paths in the wood  and then five carried out the boggy meadow survey. We were also delighted to award Sam Evans with his certificate for completing 30 hoursofvoluntary service with us. He has been able to use his experiences to fulfil his communityservice for both the Duke of Edinburgh award and the Welsh Baccalaureate.
July: A working party of 11 turned up as the Summer Holidays start.
At this time of year there is very little to do as the meadows flowers bloom and seed, and the animal life takes advantage of the food available and produce their young,as undisturbed as possible.Maintenance work carried out included painting the kissing gates, laying of bark on the back path, and some cutting back of paths as the vegetation growth takes over.
August: 12 volunteers got to work on this dry Sunday morning. 5 set out to complete the Boggy meadow survey that had started in June. A few extra species were identified and we were particularly pleased to see the extent of the Red Bartsia growth; this plant is a hemi-parasite that restricts grass growth and helps to establish more biodiversity.Most of the other workers cut down the brambles and undergrowth alongside the paths so that they are are clear for walking. Paul headed off in the other direction to clear one of the ponds, also producing a very damp dog at the end!
Thank you to all who supported today, especially John Young whose expertise, working alongside Peter, was invaluable.
September: 18 volunteers turned up on a pleasant September morning. Kevin had mowed two meadows so there was twice the work to complete this year!
Michelle Bales (Buglife) brought along yellow rattle and wild flower seed suitable for growth in an area with tussocks. The new Welsh Baccalaureate volunteers helped to sow the seed as the margins were cut back.
Another work group continued to improve the area next to the Rhydypenau Rd entrance,
Thanks to all who turned up and for the provision of the much appreciated cider and welsh cakes!
October :According to the Chairman: "A successful day. There were 14 volunteers including the 3 new Welsh Baccalaureate boys who were brilliant and worked so hard!". Well done James, Iwan and Ioan. Jobs comlpeted included digging drainage ditches, cutting back overgrowth and clearing paths.
November: Fifteen volunteers turned up (including four Welsh Baccalaureate boys).
Weatherwise we were lucky as it was dry and fairly mild.
The drains in Woods Covert were cleared and the undergrowth around the four apple trees was cleared. The boys sowed yellow rattle seed with Kevin (our Ranger) in the meadows next to Cardiff High School.There were an interesting few finds in the stream, including an old tent and a chair!
December :   Fifteen volunteers turned out on a misty December morning to cut back vegetation and to clear pathways. As is customary, the mulled wine and mince pies brought a festive feel to the refreshment break! 
We were also delighted to present Joseph with a certificate on completing his 30 hours of community work. 


2015 WORKDAYS

25th January 

We shall be continuing with the laying of the hedge in the
Reservoir Car Park. This will be a chance to learn a valuable new skill
which you can put to practice in your own garden; a well maintained
hedge is a valuable wildlife resource, especially for nesting birds.
There will also be other tasks available on the day. 

Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon

22nd February - 

This will be the last chance this year to work on the
hedge before the growing season starts. We shall also be laying woodchips
on the back path in the Rhydypenau Wood area. 

Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon

29th March - 

The nesting season will have started so any cutting back is
to be avoided. However we shall continue with laying bark on the paths
through the Rhydypenau Wood area, and if weather allows we'll give the
finger posts and kissing gates a coat of wood preserver.  

Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon


26th April  
The main task is Path Maintenance and this time we will be laying bark chippings on the lower section of Cliff’s Path. If the weather allows we will apply wood preserver to the kissing gates and the finger posts near the large noticeboard.
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (entrance beside 127 Rhydypenau Rd).

31st May
There are two main tasks planned.
There is some building work to be done on the Bird Viewing Platform which is much in need of repair.  And we shall be preparing the areas ( i.e. making scrapes ) in Rhydyblewin Meadow and then sowing the wild flower seeds there  - so bring your favourite fork or spade along if you fancy this task.
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (entrance beside 127 Rhydypenau Rd).


28th June                                                                                                                                                                                  The Wildflower Survey Part 1 -  takes place on the Boggy Meadow. (See above.). We shall be continuing with last months efforts - doing repair work to the Bird Viewing Platform near Rhydyblewin Farmhouse. There is also tree encroachment onto the adjacent meadowland so these need to be removed.  And there will be the summertime tasks of painting the kissing gates as well. Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (entrance beside 127 Rhydypenau Rd).

19th July 
It is time for the annual stream clean in the Woods Covert area so bring your wellies! Meet at Heol Esgyn Bridge30th August - In an effort to spread the yellow rattle throughout the meadows we will be harvesting the seeds and locating to other areas. There is also part 2 of the Boggy Meadow wildflower survey! For the more physical we will be removing the laurel in Rhydypenau Wood. Meet at Heol Esgyn.

30th August (Dare we hope for some sunshine?)       

This is always a popular event and takes place in the High School Meadow. It is suitable for people of all ages. As it is thirsty work there is cider (with pop for the under 18’s) and Welsh cakes on offer as refreshment.  And if you like foraging it would be a good idea to come supplied with some plastic bags as there are lots of blackberries ripening along the paths and around the edges of meadow.

Meet at Heol Esgyn Bridge                   Time: 10am  12noon

20th September.
This is a good time to tackle the bramble and willow encroachment beside the footpath running through the meadows (and take the opportunity to eat the black berries!) For the more physically active the drainage channels within the meadows will need to be redug in preparation for the winter rains. Meet at the Reservoir Car Park off the entrance by 127 Rhydypenau Road        Time: 10am  12noon


October 25th - We will be clearing invasive scrub from the meadows and cutting grass within the small experimental orchard in the Rhydyblewin area. There will also be an opportunity to sow wildflower seed in preparation for the spring. Meet at the Blackoak Road entrance adjacent to Rhydyblewin Farm (next to no. 81) 

November 22nd - It's that time of year where all of the drainage channels within Woods Covert get blocked with leaves, so we will be clearing the channels to help the water flow into the stream. For those that would rather avoid the mud the bramble encroaching onto the meadows will also need to be cut back. Meet at the bridge off Heol Esgyn.

December 20th - Installing alder matting to some of the explorer posts adjacent to the Rhydypenau Pond area to create a dry stable surface to walk on. Mulled wine and mince pies to follow! Meet at the Reservoir Car Park off of Rhydypenau Road (next to no.127)

2014 WORKDAYS


SUNDAY 21st DECEMBER - a Workday with a Festive Flavour
We shall be back in Rhydypenau Woods continuing the maintenance work on the Back Path which was started in November. And for those who find that work too heavy there is the option of laurel cutting and pruning back any straggly vegetation near the pathways.
More importantly there will be Mince Pies and Mulled Wine served as refreshments.
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon


SUNDAY 23rd NOVEMBER
We shall be laying alder matting on the Back Path through Rhydypenau Wood to create a dry and stable surface to walk on. Also there will be some cutting back of the invasive laurels which are making a home for themselves in the woodlands. The paths, too, need to be cleared of encroaching vegetation.



SUNDAY 19th OCTOBER
We shall be working in Woods Covert clearing the drainage channels in preparation for the winter rains. Also there will be the cutting back and removal of scrub (those brambles again!) in the grassland area adjoining Cardiff High School.
Meet at thHeol Esgyn bridge.        Time: 10am – 12noon

SUNDAY 28th SEPTEMBER
The Annual Hayrake.  See full details above
Meet at Heol Esgyn Bridge.              Time: 10 am - 12 noon.

SUNDAY 31st AUGUST is also a normal WORKDAY when we shall be painting the 

kissing gates (weather permitting) and clearing the drainage channels in advance of the autumn rains. We also need to tidy up the footpaths by cutting back the encroaching vegetation.

You don’t have to be an expert to take part in the wild flower count. Come and join us!

For both events the meeting place is:-

The Old Car Park of Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Road) Time 10am - 12noon 


SUNDAY 27th JULY
Now that the fish have had a chance to breed and the small fry can swim away in the Nant Fawr it is time for the annual Stream Clean.  And at the same time we shall do a Litter Pick in Woods Covert. Also to tie in with the Wild Flower surveys we are doing this summer we shall be having a go at Seed Collection of certain species of woodland plants. At a future date the seeds will be transplanted into Rhydypenau Woods which have a less diverse flora than Woods Covert (described as “ancient semi-natural woodland”).
Meet at the Heol Esgyn bridge.        Time:10am – 12noon


SUNDAY 29th JUNE
We shall be working on the Back Path in Rhydypenau Woods. There are bark chippings to lay and the overhanging vegetation needs to be cut back. Hopefully it will be dry enough for some painting too - a coat of wood preserver needs to be applied to the posts of our new Explorer Trail.
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon


SATURDAY 14TH JUNE

The Wild Flower Survey (See full details above). Even if you only know your daisies from your dandelions come along to find out what wild flowers are to be found in the meadows (and woods).
Meet at Old Car Park of Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Road)    Time  10am - 12noon


SUNDAY 25th MAY


We are assuming that it will be Painting Weather at this time of year!  Both the kissing-gates (by the old farmhouse) and the Bird-viewing Platform need a new coat of paint. The path also requires some repair and maintenance.




Meet at the Rhydyblewin Farm entrance (off Black Oak Road). Time: 10am – 12noon

SUNDAY 27th APRIL

We shall be in Rhydypenau Woods topping up Cliff’s Path with wood chips. There is also work to be done completing the steps on the Back Path. If we have time and plenty of help we shall also repair the dam in the woodland using clay to create a shallow pool of water to encourage a habitat for aquatic invertebrates.


Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon

SUNDAY 23rd MARCH

The steps on the back path need to be reinstated and the kissing gates need a coat of wood preserver. As the birds are nesting now we will leave the undergrowth undisturbed - so no cutting back of the brambles this time. However there are still more woodchips to be laid on the back path - after all it has been a wet wet winter!
 Activitity:  Spring Scavenger Hunt is available for children with parental supervision
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon

SUNDAY 23rd FEBRUARY

More Explorer Trail posts to install in Rhydypenau Woods. We shall also be working in the meadows to control any invasive saplings by pulling them out and creating ‘habitat piles’ from the cuttings.
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon

SUNDAY 19th JANUARY

The installation of Explorer Trail posts in Rhydypenau Woods.  Also there is the ongoing work on the Back Path. So there will be alder matting to lay and barrowloads of woodchips to be scattered on the path to help create a drier and less muddy surface to walk on.
Activitity:  Winter Scavenger Hunt is available for children with parental supervision
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd).Time: 10am – 12noon




2013 WORKDAYS 

·       SUNDAY 8th DECEMBER

 

For the Xmas workday it is a return to the Back Path through Rhydypenau Woods. We will be laying woodchip on the alder matting that was constructed in November. But to reward all your hard work we will be supplying mulled wine and mince pies to keep you warm!

Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon

 

·       SUNDAY 17th NOVEMBER

Path maintenance again! This time it is the Back Path through Rhydypenau Woods that needs attention, so we will be laying some more alder matting in this area to help create a drier walking surface (and in so doing attempt to slow down off road cyclists perhaps!).

Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon


·       SUNDAY 27TH OCTOBER
It is now time to prepare for the winter rains and the drainage channels on the meadow need to be cleaned and the paths maintained.  Autumn is also a good time of year to cut back the of you put this on e encroaching bramble and tree saplings round the perimeter. If meadow work is not to your liking there are always other tasks on offer. Kevin, our Ranger, comes supplied with tools, gloves and any other equipment needed for the day

Please meet at the Reservoir Old Car Park (off Rhydypenau Road)   10 am -12noon 
·       SUNDAY 29TH SEPTEMBER
This workday takes place in the Meadows behind Rhydypenau Road and Black Oak Road. The Grassland Management Plan we commissioned from Peter Sturgess in 2010 suggested that we should ‘micro-manage’ the high conservation areas. In the absence of animals to graze the land we need to cut and clear away the grasses in certain spots to reduce the soil fertility. Parts of the meadow already have colonies of yellow rattle which inhibits the growth of grass so we are keen to help this process along.
If meadow work is not to your liking there are always other tasks on offer. Kevin, our Ranger, comes supplied with tools, gloves and any other equipment needed for the day.
Meet at the Old Car Park at Llanishen Reservoir (off Rhydypenau Rd). Time: 10am – 12noon
·       SUNDAY 25TH AUGUST - THE ANNUAL HAY-RAKE
This is always a popular event - regardless of what the weather has in store for us on the day.
The new patch where we are encouraging a wild flower meadow is on the land between the back of Cardiff High School and the path beside the Nant Fawr. The tall grasses will have been cut and our task is to rake up the mowings and scatter them at the sides so that the soil is left without extra nourishment. (This allows the wild flower seeds to grow and bloom the following year)
It is a case of many hands making light work. It is thirsty work however and we shall be offering the customary Cider and Welsh Cakes as refreshments.
Meet at Heol Esgyn Bridge          Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 28TH JULY

A change of venue  and we shall be in Woods Covert this Sunday for a Stream Clean and Litter Pick.  It is a popular event and we never know what interesting bits of flotsam and jetsam will be found in the Nant Fawr! Remember to wear wellies if you are venturing into the stream.

The meeting place is
 Heol Esgyn Bridge    . Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 23RD JUNE

We shall be continuing the tasks that we started last month but this time we shall be working in the far end of  the Meadows.  So come prepared for more painting of gates and posts and checking that the drainage for the path is working properly.  (There are always other light tasks available if you find these ones unsuitable)

The meeting place is 
Black Oak Road Entrance, near Bird Platform. Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 19TH MAY

It is Spring Cleaning time - so it is out with the paintbrushes! Today we shall be painting the kissing gates and the finger posts near the old car park (unless, of course, we are unlucky enough to have a wet morning).
We shall also be doing some general maintenance to the footpath running across the meadows.

The meeting place is 
Reservoir Old Car Park, off Rhydypenau Rd. Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 14TH APRIL
A further assault on the boggy bits of the Back Path - we shall be continuing last months’s work of renovating the Back Path.
The Dormouse Project is an interesting new venture. There are historical records of dormice on site and there have been recent findings within a neighbouring area north of Cardiff. So on this workday we plan to install dormouse boxes as a monitoring exercise to see if the species are currently present within Nant Fawr.
The meeting place is Reservoir Old Car Park, off Rhydypenau Rd.          Time: 10am – 12noon    

·       SUNDAY 24TH MARCH
The wet winter has given us lots of path renovation to do!  So we aim to improve the  Back Path in Rhydypenau Woods by laying alder cordwood over the boggy parts and then putting down a covering of chipwood to create a dry and stable surface to walk on.
And we will continue with the woodland management plan of looking out for and pulling out any sycamore saplings and stray laurel plants. It is amazing how quickly a small tree or shrub establishes itself if it is content with its surroundings!
The meeting place is Reservoir Old Car Park, off Rhydypenau Rd.      Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 17TH FEBRUARY

We plan to continue the work we started in the autumn renovating the Back Path. This involves laying alder matting down on the boggy patches and covering it with a layer of woodchip. And we will continue with the woodland management plan of looking out for and pulling out any sycamore saplings and stray laurel plants. (It is amazing how quickly a small tree or shrub establishes itself if it is content with its surroundings!)
The meeting place is 
Reservoir Old Car Park, off Rhydypenau Rd. Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 27TH JANUARY
We shall be working in Woods Covert and checking the drainage channels so that the path can remain dry during the wet season. On the woodland management side we will be controlling the number of young sycamore saplings which have sprung up. (Sycamore is not a native tree and when fully grown the canopy casts heavy shade and stops the growth of ground level plants). Laurel bushes, too, grow well in the woods but they are garden escapes, and, as such, their seedlings need to be culled. And winter is a good time for litter picking - the old coca-cola bottles and the beer cans, dropped so casually in the summer, are now very visible in the undergrowth!
The meeting place is Heol Esgyn BridgeTime: 10am –12noon                                                                                                                                                            
2012 WORKDAYS

·       SUNDAY 16TH DECEMBER - WORKDAY with a FESTIVE FLAVOUR
Come along and enjoy a very sociable morning when we enjoy a glass of mulled wine along with some mince pies for our refreshments.
The workday tasks are to do with the renovation of the Back Path. We are laying alder matting over the boggy patches and covering it with woodchips to create an easier walking surface. And winter is a good time to cut back any encroaching brambles and other exuberant vegetation.
Please feel free to join us about 11 am - even if you have no desire to participate in the actual work.
The meeting place is: Reservoir Old Car Park, off Rhydypenau Rd. Time: 10am – 12noon


·       SUNDAY 23RD SEPTEMBER is the ANNUAL HAYRAKE

Come along and enjoy a very sociable workday when we rake up the mowings from the wild flower meadow. As we are now turning the Paddock into a community orchard the new Wildflower Meadow is the grassy area adjacent to Cardiff High School playing fields. Bring along your own rake if you wish, but Kevin Date will be providing tools and equipment. And we shall enjoy the now traditional cider and welsh cakes for our refreshments. Please feel free to join us - even if you have no desire to participate in the actual hay rake. Refreshments are served about 11am.

The meeting place is Heol Esgyn Bridge Time: 10am – 12noon
AUTUMN WORKDAYS

The AUTUMN PROJECT for the NEXT THREE WORKDAYS is the renovation of the Back Path through Rhydypenau Woods.

The path has become very boggy in places with the unseasonable amount of rain we have had this year. We will be laying alder matting in the muddy parts and covering them with woodchip to create easier walking and a non-slip surface.

There will also be cutting back of vegetation (always those brambles, but also the pulling out of stray laurel seedlings and encroaching willow herb).

For those who like wet work there is some de-silting to be done in the woodland pond. The dam inflow needs a good clean to create a healthy flow of water in the pond.

·       SUNDAY 28th OCTOBER
·       SUNDAY 25th NOVEMBER
·       SUNDAY 16th DECEMBER

For all these workdays please meet at:-

Reservoir old Car Park, off Rhydypenau Road Time: 10am - 12noon


·       SUNDAY 26TH AUGUST, 2012


Meet at Rhydyblewyn Farm House, (off Blackoak Road) Time: 10am – 12noon

·       SUNDAY 22ND JULY, 2012

Meet at Rhydyblewyn Farm House, (off Blackoak Road) Time: 10am – 12noon


·       SUNDAY 24TH JUNE, 2012

Bracken Bashing Day! Bruising the stems of bracken weakens its growth and will prevent it taking over parts of the meadows. Kevin has special tools for the occasion. Also there is painting to be done on the kissing gates. Plus the Pathwork of course.
UPDATE ON RECENT WORKDAYS
Repairs to the boggy places Cliff’s Path were completed on our May workday by laying some alder matting, covered by a layer of woodchip, to make a dry, stable walking surface. (We just hope that this rainy June will not have washed our efforts away!) The logo for The Friends of Nant Fawr was also attached to the finger posts.

Meet at 
Llanishen Reservoir old Car Park (off Rhydypenau Road) Time: 10am – 12noon for the next two workdays

SUMMER WORKDAYS


The wet spring has highlighted the need for good drainage on our paths. The northern section through the meadows is in particular need of attention and Kevin, our Ranger, has made a start on digging some drainage channels alongside the footway. However this work needs to be continued, with the laying of some piping and the raising of the surface where possible. This requires more manpower so it was agreed that it should be given priority during the summer workdays of
June,
July and August.
For the less physically active there will be painting to be done on the kissing gates and the Bird Platform and there will be some bracken bashing as well. And to encourage biodiversity we plan to install some dormouse boxes in the hedgerow adjoining the reservoir on our July workday.
·       Sunday 29th April, 2012

 There is a wet section on the lower part of Cliff’s Path so some alder matting needs to be laid. This treatment is also needed on the muddy parts of the trail leading to the Back Path.
Meet at:-  
 Llanishen Reservoir old Car Park (off Rhydypenau Road)      Time: 10am – 12noon


·       Sunday 18th March, 2012

The venue is the Meadows where some resurfacing needs to be carried out on the paths, and drainage channels cleared.
Meet at:-  
 Llanishen Reservoir old Car Park (off Rhydypenau Road)      Time: 10am – 12noon  

·       Sunday 26th February, 2012

 We shall be working in Woods Covert  on winter coppicing tasks and there is general path maintenance to be carried out.   A further task is the clearing of undergrowth and brambles in  Rhydypenau Park in preparation for the Jubilee tree planting by the schools taking place at the end of February.
Meet at:-     
Heol Esgyn Bridge       Time: 10am – 12noon  

WORKDAYS 2011

The NEXT WORKDAY MEETING takes place on

Sunday 18th December and has a festive flavour with a winter warming glass of MULLED WINE  and MINCE PIES served as refreshments at 11 o’clock.


There will be some work on the agenda.  Path Maintenance is promised!  And Clearing Undergrowth - the path around the new fencing in the Meadows has got overgrown with brambles so they need cutting back and the Bird Platform area needs tidying. Coppicing is also a task to be carried out at this time of year in the woodland.

You do not have to take part in the workday to participate - all members are cordially invited to come along, have a chat and enjoy the festive fare.

Meet at Llanishen Reservoir Old Car Park  (off Rhydypenau Rd.)   Time: 10am – 12noon  
·       Sunday 23rd October
·       Sunday 27th November
·       Sunday 18th December

WINTER  WORKDAYS
·       Sunday 29th January, 2011
·       Sunday 26th February, 2011

We plan to plant the new fruit trees in the Paddock and there will be a general clearing of undergrowth in the Paddock and the new Wildflower Meadow patch.  And general coppicing tasks and the inevitable path maintenance will be on offer.
 All ages are welcome and there are tasks to suit different abilities so, even if you can only make the occasional visit, please come along and lend us your hands for the morning.
Kevin, our Ranger, comes well supplied with the necessary equipment and shows us how to use safely the different tools that are available.

For both of these workdays meet at:-    
Heol Esgyn Bridge       Time: 10am – 12noon