Primary pupils sow the seeds of future forest

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Pupils from Brodick Primary School have been playing their part in the regeneration of Glen Rosa which will benefit their own families in years to come.

Following an informative talk on the Glen Rosa Habitat Restoration Project and its aims, the pupils joined the Arran Rangers and helped to plant 76 oak trees in Glen Rosa.

The project is a large-scale regeneration and conservation programme which will protect the overgrazed landscape of Glen Rosa and replant native trees which have been obliterated over the years. To protect the area a huge fence will be built to protect the new trees, as first revealed by the Banner in June.

Excited to play their part after learning about the importance of the project and the vital role it will play in the future, the P6 and P7 children were determined to get involved despite the wintry weather and December cold.

Carrying all the trees, supporting canes, protective tubes and spades to the hillside location each pupil planted five trees each,undertaking all of the precautions to ensure that they are protected from grazing deer.

Proud of their contribution to the project the pupils now have their own mini woodland which they hope to revisit and watch as it matures into a forest over the years.

This project is supported by the players of the People’s Postcode Lottery, Brodick Castle Gardens and Country Park and many local volunteers who have contributed by planting acorns and native seeds which are being planted out as soon as they are large enough.

Local volunteers and those from the mainland, including the Lothian Conservation Volunteers, have so far planted almost 1,000  endemic Arran whitebeam, oak, aspen, alder and birch in an area of 40 hectares which is just 10 per cent of the total site size.

Other plans for the project will include areas of scrub being planted with juniper and the like, and there will be extensive restoration of the peat hags and bogs while much of landscape will be left just as it is.

If you wish to get involved with the project you can contact the Arran Rangers Service by email at goatfell@nts.org.uk or phone 01770 302462 or through the National Trust for Scotland’s website at www.nts.org.uk

Seasonal ranger Jackie Kemp tells the children about the plants they are planting. No_B52BPS01

Ranger Corinna Goeckeritz gives the children a helping hand and guidance on supporting the trees. No_B52BPS02

Digging into the soil two children prepare to plant their next tree. No_B52BPS03

Pupils climb a rocky outcrop to investigate one of the few trees remaining in Glen Rosa.  No_B52BPS04

Making good progress the pupils rapidly start populating a small area with trees. No_B52BPS05

From tiny acorns mighty oaks will grow. No_B52BPS06

Brodick Primary School volunteers who helped plant 76 acorn trees in Glen Rosa. No_B52BPS07

Photos courtesy Arran Ranger Service