Bish, bash, boshing the balsam

7 GoodGymers made their way 6.2km to help the Friends of Berrylands Nature Reserve and Friends of Berrylands Nature Reserve in Kingston upon Thames.

  • Rachel White
  • Tom Peacock
  • Petra Stockelmayerova
  • Sevan
  • Claire Dunne
  • Kingston upon Thames runner
  • Kingston upon Thames runner
Tuesday, 12th of July 2022
Led by Rachel White

A sticky summer's evening didn't deter our hardy group of GoodGymers from running to the task tonight to help Andrew and his team of volunteers to bash the balsam. The Himalayan Balsam is an ongoing problem for Berrylands Nature Reserve and they try hard to keep it under control as it can take over. Its shallow root structure means it's terrible for soil erosion and like any weed, its ability to dominate an area is immense. Every plant can produce hundreds of seeds so once it gets into an area it can be difficult to get it under control.

Our group weren't put of by this mountainous task and, in fact, found it very satisfying to pop out the stems (of which there were hundreds) as the shallow root system made it easy to do so. Soon, small piles began to form around the forest, showing our route around the area. An hour of easy chat made the task go by even quicker and soon it was time to pack away our gardening gloves and hit the road.

We'll be back in a few weeks to help out again and hopefully it will be cooler so we can wear sleeves and trousers to protect ourselves from the brambles and nettles.

Report written by Rachel White

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Rachel White
Led by Rachel White

I am the area activator for Kingston Upon Thames. Keen to keep moving and improving.

GoodGymers helping out
  • Walk Leader

    Lead a walking group to the task

    • Petra Stockelmayerova
  • Photographer

    Take photos for the session report

    • Kingston upon Thames runner
  • Back marker

    Make sure that no one is left behind

    • Claire Dunne

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