Tree-mendous Christmas Tree-cycling for Hospiscare

The University is helping local charity, Hospiscare, to recycle Christmas trees and raise money to support terminally ill people and their families.

Hospiscare will be collecting trees around Exeter between 11 – 17 January and delivering them to the University’s Streatham Campus where they will be chipped by our Grounds Team.

Agricultural students from Bicton College will be on hand to support the activity and gain first-hand experience in the operation of a woodchipper.

The University will be donating all the chippings to the Avanti Hall School (previously the Steiner Academy) and to improve local Public Rights of Way.

Last year Hospiscare raised over £5,000 with the collection service and, with our support, they are hoping to double that in 2020. Their vans will be out again this January to collect trees for a £10 donation.

“We are very grateful to the University of Exeter for agreeing to dispose of the trees our volunteers will be collecting in January”, said Louise Beeken, Head of Fundraising at Hospiscare.

“This support means we can pick up twice as many trees as last year, and from a larger area, and all the money raised will help to fund our care of terminally ill patients across Exeter, Mid and East Devon. It’s great also that the chippings from the trees will be used in other projects the University are helping with, a win-win all round!”

Anthony Cockell, Deputy Grounds Operations Manager at the University of Exeter, said “The University Grounds Team feels privileged to support the service Hospiscare provide to our community in Devon. We will be helping recycling all materials from their Christmas tree collection recycling scheme.”

“I must thank Bill Johnston, Head of Machinery Imports, at T H White and the provision of his Jensen woodchippers for making this event possible. It has brought a great opportunity for Bicton College students who will join us on the day and broaden their industry experience. The finished chippings will be shared with Avanti Hall School for their play area, as well as for the public footpaths in Lower Hoopern Valley. It will be a great effort by all and I am very much looking forward to it.”

Grounds Team and Student Tree Planting Event

The Grounds Team and 17 student volunteers worked together to plant over 100 trees in the Hoopern Taddiforde Valley along Prince of Wales Road on Saturday 30th November.

The mainly native trees including Birch, Rowan and Oak were planted as the Woodland Trust’s Big Climate Fightback.

Great job everyone!

    

 

Christmas Plant Sale – Tuesday 17th December 2019

The Grounds Team will be selling beautiful handmade Christmas wreaths, Poinsettias and a mixture of indoor and outdoor plants in The Forum Street from 9am to 2pm on Tuesday 17th December 2019.

Please do come along; it’s a great opportunity to buy some Christmas presents, add a Christmas wreath to your festive decorations and also to treat yourself!

Rustic Christmas Wreath

Traditional Christmas Wreath

Poinsettia

Celebrating our Successes – Grounds Staff Celebration Event

The annual Grounds Staff Celebration Event was held on Friday 6th December 2019; this event is held every year to thank all our staff for their hard work, enthusiasm and dedication during the past year and to celebrate our successes.

  • Successful Open Days with excellent feedback on the quality of the grounds;
  • Successful Graduation ceremonies;
  • Successful Redcot Garden Party;
  • Success in resecuring the Green Flag Award for Streatham Campus and St Luke’s Campus;
  • Success in delivering an excellent student outdoor sports experience and a BUCS top 10 league position;
  • Success with increasing income through plant sales;
  • Success in delivering business as usual during severe weather incidents such a high winds and snow and ice treatments;
  • Success in achieving over 2,800 followers on the Grounds social media platform.

The Grounds staff celebrating!

The staff also have an opportunity to vote for the prestigious Grounds awards! The fabulous winners this year were:

Most Improved Award

Most Cheerful Award

Turn To Award

Secret Santa Award

Star of the Year Award

 

Quiz Winners

Treat yourself to a beautiful handcrafted Christmas wreath!

If you would like to purchase a beautiful Christmas wreath handcrafted by our talented florists in the Grounds team, orders can  now be placed via the online store.

Choose from either a Rustic Christmas Wreath or a Traditional Christmas Wreath, £18 per wreath, delivery to either Streatham Campus or St Luke’s Campus Monday 2nd to Friday 5th December and Monday 16th to Friday 20th December.

Please allow three working days between order date and delivery date.

Rustic Christmas Wreath

Showcasing our beautiful campus grown foliage, this woodland inspired Christmas wreath is complemented with natural pine cones and British grown dried flowers.

Rustic Christmas Wreath

 

Traditional Christmas Wreath

This festive wreath combines beautiful campus grown foliage with red or gold ribbon and dried oranges or cinnamon for a classic Christmas display.

Traditional Christmas Wreath

 

Image is for illustration only, presentation may differ from the image shown.

Bees’ Needs Week 8th-14th July 2019

Bees and other pollinators are vital to growing lots of our favourite foods and for plants to flourish in our fields and gardens.

It is Bees’ Needs Week from 8th to 14th July 2019 and whether you are a farmer, a gardener or a manager of urban or amenity spaces, there is something you can do to help support our valuable insect pollinators.

There are five simple actions you can take to help pollinators and make sure their populations are sustained:

  1. Grow more flowers, shrubs and trees – our mature and exotic plants give long flowering periods for bees and insects.
  2. Let your garden grow wild – we have wildflower meadows located throughout our campuses to encourage biodiversity.
  3. Cut your grass less often – we ensure refuge strips are left uncut along campus watercourses to encourage wildlife.
  4. Don’t disturb insect nest and hibernation spots – we practise sympathetic maintenance regimes and have installed bug hotels and insect palaces throughout our campuses.
  5. Think carefully about whether to use pesticides – we use Integrated Pest Management to minimise the use of pesticides.

Green fingers crossed for Anthony!

Good luck to Anthony Cockell, our amazing Deputy Grounds Operations Manager, who has been shortlisted in the Impact category of the Professional Services Recognition Awards 2019.

The Impact Award recognises a colleague or team who has made the exceptional happen, requires disruptive thinking, fresh ways of working and solutions with impact.

Winners will be announced at the awards ceremony tonight. Good luck Anthony; we have our green fingers crossed for you!

Anthony Cockell, Deputy Grounds Operations Manager

Discovery of rare and unusual tropical plant growing on campus!

Groundbreaking news!

We have discovered this rare and unusual tropical plant growing on Streatham Campus! It is an Dracunculus vulgaris (voodoo lily) which can normally only be seen growing in glasshouses!

It is native to North East India and the Himalayan region and the much branch umbrella like foliage is held aloft on a single long speckled stalk.

Dracunculus vulgaris growing on Streatham Campus

Interesting patterned stalk of the Dracunculus vulgaris