Slope with a pile of cut gorse in the middle and grass on both sides

Glorious Gorselands

I returned to a Glorious Grasslands site in the North Cotswolds which we’ve spent time before at trying to manage the encroaching gorse. The weather started out pretty terrible – the fields were flooded and the rain relentless for the first hour or so.

Mostly the higher ground in the Cotswolds is calcareous, which attracts plants that like alkaline conditions – the classic indicator species like field scabious.

However, in some parts there is an additional layer of green sand on top and this creates more acidic conditions

Large gorse bushes on a slope over reaching onto grass
Gorse encroaching onto grassland

Gorse is not a plant we see often on our habitat management projects, because it prefers these conditions. However, we find when we clear it, we not only see the classic indicators species, but also other plants which are rarer in the wider Cotswolds. So sites like this are particularly species rich grassland, but the scrub has to be managed to allow them to thrive.

The plan was to cut the gorse and place the arisings in the middle of the track for the tractor to clear. However, after one attempt, it became clear that it was too wet and the tractor just churned the track into a mess. So we left the cuttings in the middle and the farmer will return on a dry day.

In the evening, we held another Dursley Green Drinks. Around 25 people attended, including some new faces. As usual, there were lots of connections made, and plenty of information shared between the participants.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *