31 May 2021

Scottish Wildlife Trust volunteers add to B-Line - planting for pollinators at Tullich Kirk

Scottish Wildlife Trust volunteers have been helping to plant wildflowers to create a pollinator friendly grassland at Tullich Kirk, Ballater.

The work is being undertaken in memory of Esther Woodward, a much-loved past chair of the Aberdeenshire Scottish Wildlife Trust and local landscape architect.

Kirsten Dickson, secretary of the Scottish Wildlife Trust’s Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire Local Group, said: “We are delighted to be involved in creating and managing this small wildflower area. It is such a beautiful place, and we hope the planting will provide another feature for visitors to the Kirk and the Pictish stones to enjoy.

“Esther helped to buy the nearby Tullich woodland for the community, so it’s seems very appropriate to plant these wildflowers here in her memory.”

Greenspace Aberdeenshire project officer Tajana Telisman Sosic added: “We are delighted that the Scottish Wildlife Trust will be involved in managing this area. We have several community-led projects to enhance areas with wildflowers and native trees across Aberdeenshire. It’s always great to see community groups getting involved.”

A total of 650 wildflowers have been planted by the volunteers, with locally-grown wildflowers being supplied from the nursery at Curam Fyvie. The wildflowers are being planted on the top and sides of the recently-built shelter which houses the stones at Tullich.

This small grassland site forms part of the Scotland wide B-line network. Identified by Buglife (Invertebrate Conservation Charity) in 2020, B-lines join important hotspots for pollinators.

Tullich Kirk is on the Deeside B-line and Scottish Wildlife Trust volunteers hope that this will be the first of many projects linking up existing sites. Wildflower grasslands provide a vital habitat for a wide range of animals and plants and are particularly important for invertebrates from grasshoppers and froghoppers to solitary bees and hoverflies. This is the first new planting site in Aberdeenshire to be added to the Buglife B-line map.