Roadside verges across the borough of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon (ABC) are bursting with colour and buzzing with wildlife this summer, thanks to ABC Council’s Wildflower Road Verge Project.
Launched back in 2019, the pilot programme is designed to champion biodiversity across the region by managing native wildflower meadows and verges to create stunning biodiverse grasslands for everyone to enjoy.
With more than 20 wildflower sites across the ABC borough now, residents can spot these wonderful floral displays everywhere from Derrymacash to Dromore, Magheralin to Markethill and Moy Road to Rathfriland. Home to bluebells, daisies, dandelions, buttercups, clovers, knapweeds, orchids and a variety of wild grasses, the borough’s wildflower verges not only create an ever-changing picture for us to enjoy but they also support our native pollinators including butterflies, moths and bees, helping to sustain insects that pollinate our food crops.
Visiting Magheralin’s wildflower road verge this week, Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Councillor Paul Greenfield said:
“It is absolutely fantastic to see council’s Wildflower Road Verge Project flourish – which is quite literally the case here at Magheralin! Growing in strength and in numbers, this pilot programme allows us to see more spaces come alight with colour and thrum with insects well into the summer months. With a diverse mix of native flowering plants and grasses, these areas are a haven for wildlife as they provide food and shelter for a wide variety of butterflies, bees, birds and small mammals.
“Through this initiative we hope to support the growth of our native pollinators but I would encourage us all do our bit, whether it’s growing more nectar-rich flowers, leaving patches of garden to grow wild or cutting our grass less often and removing the cuttings – these simple steps can be highly effective!”
Continually assessing the Wildflower Road Verge Project and its success, ABC Council hopes to roll out more wildflower sites across the borough, which showcase nature’s finest flowers at their best.