Page last updated at 13:33 GMT, Tuesday, 8 July 2008 14:33 UK

Wildflower project at city park

Baxter Park
A summer meadow and spring glade are being created

A group of volunteers is hoping to make a park in Dundee a haven for wildlife and visitors.

Friends of Baxter Park is using a 10,000 lottery grant to develop a spring glade and summer meadow, which should be ready by June next year.

Weeding and grass cutting will take place before experts from the Botanic Garden test the soil to see which plants would grow best.

The group is also creating a wetland, which should be completed by 2010.

The volunteers have identified two areas near a natural spring which they will turn into their spring glade and summer meadow.

At the moment, the patches are over-run with grass, dockans and nettles, but they are being cleared and new wildflowers planted.

Chairwoman of Friends of Baxter Park Irene Shearer said: "The spring glade is a grassy area in a circle of trees, and it's a spring glade because the sun gets in in the springtime before the leaves come out in the trees.

Most of our park is just mown grass, which is all very well, but mown grass is mown grass
Irene Shearer
Friends of Baxter Park
"We're hoping to grow lots of plants in there that show their best in the springtime, like fritillaries, crocuses, that kind of thing.

"Then in the hill behind that we're developing our summer meadow, which is a big open space created when a large beech tree, which had reached the end of its life in a public park, had to be taken down.

"We're clearing off all the grass and the dockans and we're reseeding with, hopefully, plants which will bloom there in later summer, including poppies etc."

The group has about 120 members who will be involved in the weeding, clearing and reseeding.

The council will help get rid of the overgrown grass and dockans.

It is also hoped that eco-groups at local schools will monitor what grows and what does not from the seeds which are planted.

Ms Shearer said: "Most of our park is just mown grass, which is all very well, but mown grass is mown grass.

"We're hoping that as well as people coming to visit to see the flower gardens, it would also give regulars who walk their dog three or four times a day different things to look at at different times in the year and just make it a bit more interesting.

"We're also hoping that people walking by these flowerbeds will think: 'Oo, I could grow some of them in my garden,' and actually increase the biodiversity of Dundee."

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