SRFC Juniors Plant 27,000 Bulbs

On Sunday the 29th of September the Sidmouth Junior Rugby Club collectively rose to the huge challenge of planting twenty seven thousand bulbs on behalf of the Keith Owen Fund.

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The ‘KOF’ have supported the rugby club recently with generous donations to the Sidford Pavilion and Sidford recreation pitch development funds. As a ‘thank-you’ the club pledged to assist the KOF’s ambitious plan to plant one million bulbs in the Sid Valley to brighten and enhance our scenic country surrounds.

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Ian Barlow of the Sidmouth Garden Centre provided the tools and bulbs which included Daffodils, Crocus, Snowdrops, Scilla’s, Bluebells and Wood Anemones and in the week prior to planting a plan was devised by Kati FitzHenry.

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 On the preceding Thursday Mr Barlow, with  the aid of his mini plough, loosened the soil  at the top of the Byes walk, the largest of  the four plots allocated to the club, so as to  ease the chance of blisters on delicate  hands. A mechanical digger was also used to  make small holes in the bank adjacent to  Sidbury United football club, again to ease  the digging required to plant this second  plot, and a turf cutter was used to open the  ground in Warrens Mead , plot three, and  the fourth plot adjacent to Sidford Health  Centre.

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The night before the ‘big plant’ Kati and  Chris divided the twenty seven thousand  bulbs into small bags numbering and allotting them to specific age groups, stretches and positions in the plots. Nine tenths of any job is preparation and early on Sunday morning after the individual bags were positioned the organisers waited to see how many ‘troops’ would arrive to assist.

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They needn’t have panicked as bang on time, prior to a full morning’s training , the Cavalry duly arrived with pitch forks, spades, hoes and trowels. A fifty year old rotavator even turned up! Some took the early morning opportunity of harvesting the mushroom crop that had sprung up over the weekend on the pitches, some talked the talk, most walked the walk and feverishly our 300 strong platoon set about filling holes with bulbs and covering them over. Within an hour the job was done and we all took the opportunity to stroll about admiring our invisible investment slapping each other on the back and generally whooping up our efforts ! All joking aside it truly was a magnificent collective effort which brought the club tighter together, signalled our commitment to the community and hopefully made our town a brighter place. Well done all who took part.

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Many thanks to the U7 mums for providing the refreshments on the day and roll on next Spring for the big burst of floral colour.