Celebrate our marvellous meadows at Loch of Strathbeg event

Wildflower planting at last year's event.
Wildflower planting at last year's event.

National Meadows Day, dedicated to celebrating and protecting our vanishing wildflower meadows and the wealth of wildlife they support, will take place on Saturday, July 1.

National Meadows Day, dedicated to celebrating and protecting our vanishing wildflower meadows and the wealth From barefoot walks and scything workshops, to picnics and bug hunts, people will have the opportunity to experience first-hand the petalled-paradise that is a meadow in summer.

Marvellous Meadows will be celebrated at Loch of Strathbeg on Saturday. Between 11am and 4pm families can take part in activities like a treasure hunt, wildflower planting, pond dipping and much more! There will also be a chance to explore ‘Hidden Strathbeg’ with a guided walk through the reserve to the wet fen meadow at 2pm. This event is free.

Claire Parton, Save Our Magnificent Meadows Project Manager, said: "Meadows, once a feature of every parish in Aberdeenshire, are now an increasingly fragile part of our national heritage but all is not lost. National Meadows Day is the perfect way to explore and enjoy the flowers and wildlife of Aberdeenshire’s magnificent meadows and understand their special place in our shared social and cultural history.

"Beyond being a quintessential sight of summer, meadows' value to our wildlife cannot be overstated - a single healthy meadow can be home to over 80 species of wild flowers, such as cuckoo flower, yellow rattle, orchids, knapweed and scabious, compared to most modern agricultural pasture which typically supports under a dozen species."

Just 100 years ago there would have been a meadow in every Aberdeenshire community, supporting a way of life that had gone on for centuries. They provided grazing and hay for livestock, employment, and food and medicine for the parish and were part of a community's cultural and social history.

"Today, just 3% of the meadows that existed in the 1930s remain - that’s a loss of 7.5 million acres of wild flower grassland."