Wildflowers on their way to Hertfordshire's roadsides

PUBLISHED: 13:55 30 November 2019

The wildflowers are expected to appear two years after being planted. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto/cordimages

The wildflowers are expected to appear two years after being planted. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto/cordimages

Copyright 2015 Stephen Cordory. All rights reserved

Roadside verges could become wildflowers hubs after Hertfordshire County Council agreed to test a new approach to grass cutting along the county's roads.

Around 70 roadside verges in rural areas will be cut only once a year, between mid-July and mid-August, with the grass cuttings being removed.

This will allow for the growth, flowering and seeding of wildflowers, as well as preventing the verges from being dominated by more aggressive plant species.

Mark Kemp, director of environment and infrastructure, said: "We're determined to protect and improve Hertfordshire's natural environment and this fairly simple change to how we cut roadside grass will help increase the habitats and food that our pollinating insects rely on."

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The new approach to grass cutting will start in 2020, although it will take at least two years before the first wildflowers appear.

Some verges may appear overgrown or unmaintained in the first year, but this a natural part of the new habitat establishing itself.

The verges that will be cut in this way have been identified using wildlife and ecology data.

For safety reasons, verges in urban areas, and around rural junctions and bends in the road, will continue to be cut in the same way as before.

The new approach will now be discussed by the county council's cabinet next month before being formally approved.

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