Beavers reap rewards of hard work

7th Crawley Beavers

7th Crawley Beavers

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The 7th Crawley Beavers have been harvesting the fruits of their labour for quite a few weeks now at their community garden in Tilgate.

But there are still tomatoes ripening on the vines, carrots waiting to be picked, squashes scrambling around the flower bed and parsley, sage and mint growing in amongst the flowers.

The most amazing thing about this flower bed is that all the vegetables were grown from seed by the Beavers themselves – they even made signs to tell you which vegetable was sown where.

The delight and pride in these young people’s faces when they show you what they’ve grown is quite inspirational.

Let’s FACE it! met up with the Beavers to carry out a litter pick of the area around their community garden.

Once the obligatory health and safety talk had been given (don’t pick anything with your hands, only use the litter picker, keep the litter picker’s point down and don’t run with them or wave them about) we split up into groups to cover the area.

Even though at first glance the area looked fairly clean we still found quite a lot of litter. Someone had dumped some big black bags of rubbish under a tree on the green which were too big to pick up, however this gave us the opportunity to explain to the Beavers how the council deals with fly tipping.

Anyone can report fly tipping and litter online at www.crawley.gov.uk/litter where you can fill in a simple form and pinpoint the exact location of the fly tipping or litter on a map.

The council aims to clear most problems within two working days.

You can also ring the council’s freephone number 0800 5875 888 to report a problem.

Back to the litter pick with the Beavers. It soon became apparent there was lots of “mushrooms” growing on the large grassed area and concentration on picking up litter lapsed into seeing whether we could join up all the “mushrooms” into a “fairy ring”.

As not all fungi are of the friendly variety, the Beavers were instructed not to touch but to take a really good look.

The Beavers decided that they were not the sort of edible mushrooms you get in the shops as they did not look the same – but we decided that even if they looked the same we could not be 100 per cent certain so we left the fungi alone and went back to collecting litter.

There are some quite spectacular fungi just starting to appear in our open spaces and woodlands as the fungi season gets into full swing.

One of the most iconic and distinctive of British fungi is the “Amanita muscaria” more commonly known as the fly agaric. With its red cap and white spots it’s really colourful.

A group of fly agaric fungi appears every year without fail on Southgate Avenue (of all places!) under some trees just before the railway bridge.

They usually don’t last very long in this location as it’s a popular route but there are currently there reminding everyone that autumn is on the way!