August was a fun month with a great bunch of volunteers to finish off the season. We even had some sunshine for a day here and there! We had a good varied task list for the month.

We completed some garden work around the proposed new health clinic building. Building work could not start until the front door could be found under all the overgrowth! We soon sorted that and removed the largest pile of brambles I have ever seen. Every year I think I have seen the most brambles in any one place, quickly to discover the record to be beaten once again. We wondered if there was an entry in the Guinness Book of Records for the largest pile of brambles and if there wasn’t then we might look into entering one!!

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We had a day helping the Primary School find their garden after the summer holidays and discovered the slugs (and maybe the mouse we found) had eaten quite a lot of the veg but also down the the rubbish weather we have had, it has been a pretty poor growing season for all here this year. Nonetheless the school kids do have some cabbage and plenty of tatties to eat!

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We then headed down to the Singing Sands to carry out some path maintenance. We worked on drainage, fixing broken steps on the style, replacing wire on the bridges to keep them from being slippy and re-erecting the marker posts as the cows just think they are scratching posts especially for them!

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Next up we headed to the forestry to clear around trees planted in February 2014 on our first tree planting Conservation Working Holiday. For the larger tasks like clearing around new trees we quite often join volunteer forces so we had the assistance of the SWT volunteers which was a welcome help as there is 2500 trees! The Douglas Fir look like they may be struggling a bit but still alive so that is good! The Larch are doing ace and popping their unruly branches over the top of the plastic protectors. I was also very enthused to find the Scots Pine have also taken as we have never had any luck growing them previously. We also have a random assortment of species growing as a trial along the boundaries of Cherry and Horn Beam both surviving well. Then some more natives that we know do well like Oak and Rowan. The thing that kept us going the most was finding patches of wild raspberries growing, a welcome rest and a fine energy booster!

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                                    Larch                                                 Scots Pine

Throughout the month we completed a couple of beach cleans, one on Laig beach and the other on Kildonan helping the primary school kids.

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We also had the Monday Craft Fairs pictured below and the Friday Croft days so yet again the month flew passed and many more tasks completed!