Wild East Devon May newsletter

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

Wild East Devon news - East Devon District Council

Good luck Tim!

goodbye to Tim Dafforn

This month we said a big farewell to our Countryside Team Leader (People) Tim Dafforn. He has been offered an exciting role with the National Trust at Killerton. He has had a wonderful 7 years leading the team and developing our volunteer, events, outdoor learning and wellbeing projects. Tim said ”I will be sad to be leaving such a great team of staff, who have helped me achieve so much. I leave our programmes and team in a strong place and our flagship site at Seaton Wetlands thriving. Thank you to our amazing team of volunteers who make our sites flourish and our visitors smile. I am not going far so I may bump into you in the future. Stay well and stay wild!”

Bluebell Week a resounding success


Thanks to everyone who took part in our Bluebell Week celebrations earlier this month, we had a fantastic 7 days embracing the signs of spring across East Devon in our first week-long festivity.

Don't miss our plant sale at Seaton Wetlands on 30 May, 11am-3pm.

The Spring Photo Competition was launched as part of Bluebell Week and runs until next weekend, so there’s still time to enter. Send your best springtime pictures from East Devon to wild@eastdevon.gov.uk for a chance to appear in our 2022 Wild East Devon Calendar.

Read more


Why buy nature-friendly charcoal?

natural charcoal

This is now Wild East Devon’s second year of summer charcoal production, turning waste materials from winter conservation work into a fabulous product for barbecues or horticulture.

Nature Reserve Charcoal”, as it is called, is being produced on our reserves using a unique mobile charcoal kiln designed and manufactured right here in Devon. The Exeter Retort is self-fuelling, recycling the gasses from the wood being pyrolised (the technical term for turning something in charcoal) and returning them into the burn chamber to maintain a working heat of up to 500 degrees centigrade! At these very high temperatures, what would take a traditional ring kiln 36 hours to create, is done and dusted in a single working day.

Read more

Ramble around the reserves

Holyford Woods

The spring weather this year could not have been much more different to what we experienced last year. With far colder temperatures and an early dry spell, it was somewhat more of an amble than a jump in to the season. The result of this has been a later showing of many wildflowers; bluebells were at their peak a full two weeks later than the previous year, with ramsons (wild garlic) being even further behind. The benefit of this to observers however, is that spring seems to have been stretched out for our enjoyment for longer than usual, and we have been able to enjoy seeing some of our favourite flowers all out together at the same time. Parts of Holyford Woods for example have been a beautiful sea of white and blue, interspersed with the bright pink of campion, and the warm yellow of archangel.

Rain! and why we should be grateful for it...

Read more

leaf viewing

Now that spring is well underway new leaves are unfurling from their buds and growing on trees and hedgerows.

Next time you are out on a walk have a close look at some of the different leaves that you spot. Can you find different shaped and coloured leaves? Have a feel, some are smooth and others are covered in tiny hairs. Give them a sniff- do they all smell the same? You can even taste young beech, hawthorn or lime leaves! (Never eat any plants unless you are confident that you know what it is).

To have an even closer look, watch the video to make a leaf viewer to help you to see their tiny veins.