You may remember the Transition Chichester ‘Buckthorn for Brimstones’ project which was organised last year to try to help brimstone butterflies by encouraging people to plant one or more alder buckthorn bushes in their gardens. Alder buckthorn is one of only two food plants for brimstone caterpillars. Last year, more than 300 bushes were planted in the Chichester area through this scheme.
The bushes are now available again, at cost price of £1 each.
If you would like some, please get in touch by emailing TCbuckthornforbrimstones@gmail.com saying how many bushes you want me to reserve for you. You will be sent an information sheet, telling you how to plant and look after your alder buckthorn bush, and also something about brimstone butterflies and their life cycle. We will arrange a date for you to come to my front garden in central Chichester (armed with a plastic bag to put the bushes in to save the roots drying out). You then help yourself to the bushes that you have reserved (please make sure that you count the bushes carefully as you take them – several people have gone away with a whole bundle instead of one by mistake!), and push the relevant number of £1 coins through my letterbox. The bushes are bare rooted, so need to be planted as soon as possible, or at any rate somehow kept with their roots moist until you are ready to plant them – you could heel them into the ground, or keep the roots covered in damp soil or damp newspaper. Please let me know the postcode where you are intending to plant the bushes so that I can plot it on a Google map.
Many thanks to Butterfly Conservation Suffolk, whose own Buckthorn and Brimstone project inspired ours.
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