Worthy causes across Somerset have recently received a total of 2,016 saplings for various gardening projects thanks to Monkton Elm garden centre.
Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre at Monkton Heathfield in Taunton invited schools, charities, village organisations and community groups to nominate themselves for the annual giveaway scheme.
Andrew Pitman, Plant Manager at Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre, explained: “We have held our sapling giveaway every year and it is always extremely popular. This year’s giveaway has once again been hugely successful and we had lots of people come forwards for the free trees.
“We were particularly interested to hear from people who were working on wildlife projects as we believe protecting wildlife is extremely important and want to encourage more people to provide shelter and food for various animals.”
One of the organisations to benefit from a donation of saplings was North Wootton Village Wildlife Area.
Colin Elliot, Deputy Warden of St Peter’s Church and a representative of North Wootton PCC, said: “We are extremely grateful to Monkton Elm for its kind donation of saplings for our wildlife area. The church set aside land that was part of an old orchard with a grassy area and it was decided that it would be a good idea to convert it into a wildlife garden for use of all the villagers and visitors.”
The area has been officially named the North Wootton Village Wildlife Area and people can walk through the grass area and into woodland where they can spot many varieties of wildlife.
Dr Wendy Nicholson, who is an Ecologist and also a representative of North Wootton PCC, said: “With the help of volunteers we have put up bird and bat boxes, created a hedgehog house as well as placing plenty of brambles and rotting branches to encourage wildlife. We are extending the area with the inclusion of native trees and shrubs and the saplings will make a great addition and will certainly attract even more wildlife.”
Another organisation to receive saplings was Cheddar Vale Lions Club.
Thanks Monkton Elm
Janet Clark, Lion President, said: “We’d like to say a huge ‘thank you’ to Monkton Elm for its very kind donation of saplings for our projects to mark the centenary of Lions Club International.
“We will be donating the saplings to three local schools as well as the Cheddar Strawberry Line footpath and cycleway improvement project. Our club supports volunteers who look after the Axbridge to Draycott part of the line and a lot of work needs to be done to repair the path so the saplings will come in extremely handy for them.”
The garden centre set aside 2,016 small sapling trees of various varieties, which were allocated on a first come, first served basis.
Andrew added: “We really enjoy hosting the sapling giveaway as it feels great to be helping organisations with their various gardening needs. We hope to continue running it for many more years to come.”