Cyclamen in Mile End Park

Can you spare an hour or two tomorrow to volunteer and help plant bulbs in Chris’ Wood by the Art Pavilion? We’ll be there from 10am.

We’ve thousands of woodland bulbs to plant over the next couple of weeks and need a hand! The bulbs arrived earlier than expected and we need to get them in the ground before they go mouldy or dry out. This is our fifth year of planting bulbs in the park and we are making a difference.

How can you help?

Just pop along for as little or as long as you like. Moral support helps too: If you walk by just say “Hi”.

Who can come? Anyone! We have folk of all ages come: with friends, on their own, or with their kids or grandkids. (Note: Children must be accompanied by an adult).
What to wear: Dress for the weather – so something warm and a waterproof in case of showers. We have pairs of gloves, some bulb planters and hand shovels, but it would really help if you are able to bring your own. Something to kneel on is a good idea (a foam matt or even a plastic bag).
When to meet: This Sunday we will have sessions from 10-12 and 1-3.
Where to meet: We will be in Chris’ Wood (see map below), which is just south of the Art Pavilion and behind Clinton Road (by the Grove Road Texaco Garage).
Weather: As of 1pm Saturday the weather forecast is looking good actually! Dry and mild.

Chris' Wood (Mile End Park) Map
Weather Forecast for Bow and Mile End

About our woodland bulbs

We’ve selected a range of perennial native woodland bulbs that will hopefully multiply year on year, and give us a succession of flowers from late December through to late April. We aim to plant four to five thousand each year until Chris’ Wood looks like it has been carpeted with spring flowers. This is Year 5.

We’ve at least 4500 bulbs to plant this year:
English bluebells (Hyacinthoides non-scripta) which multiply like fun and hopefully we’ll have a violet-blue carpet in Chris’ Wood in a few years. How can you tell the difference between English and Spanish bluebells? [We’ve ~850 bulbs to plant].
Single Snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis) grow really quick and their distinct white flowers appear within weeks of planting, usually in January and lasting through to March [We’ve ~850 bulbs to plant.]
Winter Aconites (Eranthis hyemalis) with their bright, golden yellow flowers usually start flowering in February through to March. They can be a bit difficult to get established, so fingers-crossed [We’ve ~1000 bulbs that look little black cannon balls].
Wood Anemones (Anemonoides nemorosa) with their white petals with a pinkish tinge and its distinct yellow anthers, anemones flower from March to May. They may be slow growers, but they look a delight [We’ve ~500 tubers that look like a cross between twiglets or that Spanish Gold Sweet Tobacco some may remember as a kid!].
Wild Garlic (Allium ursinum) or ramsons give rise to that strong garlicky smell you sometimes get in woodlands. Their white flowers appear from April to June. They are slow-growing, but we’ve been putting these in for quite a few years now so we should start seeing quite a show this year [We’ve ~2000 bulbs].

I do hope you can pop along for a bit – many hands make lighter work and it is surprisingly social!

Many thanks to the Co-op Community Fund which has allowed us to buy a wider variety of woodland bulbs over the years.