Last week 4 volunteers got to work to turn an unused corner of Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre into a haven for wildlife.
First the area had to be cleared of overgrowth and litter as the blackberries and budleja had taken over most of the site making it difficult for other species to survive.
Once the site was cleared leaving a single blackberry bush, a maple tree and a single budleja behind, work began on providing new habitats for insects, birds and native plants.
This ‘bug hotel’ was made from an old pallet and used glass bottles. The spaces were later filled with sticks and straw to create an attractive environment for insects.
A similar ‘hotel’ was made using old tins and cans. This will be fixed to the side of our shipping container alongside a similar box which is full of sheep’s wool for use by nesting birds.
There’s still a lot of work to be done. Wildflowers and climbing plants will be planted to attract a range of butterflies and bees and a greater variety of insects will in turn attract garden birds. The next stage of the project will also include the building of bird and bat boxes.
These recent works are in addition to the work that has already been completed on the roof of the shipping container and staff welfare unit. Both have been fitted with living roofs, which as well as providing a valuable habitat, help with drainage, minimise water run-off, reduce urban heat island effect and help to clean local air pollution.
The changes are all designed to make Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre more sustainable as well as nicer place to visit and work. The changes benefit the local environment by improving the ecological services the site can provide. We were also pleased that a neighbouring resident whose property overlooks the site commented on how it had improved her view!
We’ll post further updates as the project continues and hope to be able to tell you about some of our new inhabitants as and when they move in!