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'Weeds' make an important contribution to eco-system
11:06am Thursday 19th September 2013 in Postbag
TWO writers recently bemoaned the abundance of “weeds” in Salisbury, in particular along the riverside path.
Might I suggest that a more appropriate term for such things is “wild flowers”, and that these make an important contribution to our ecosystem, supporting a wealth of other wildlife such as insects, birds and mammals.
As a regular user of the riverside path myself, I appreciate its floral diversity: in a recent survey of the strip between the library and the leisure centre in August, I counted 97 species of flowering plant.
With careful management to remove invasive species, I believe the presence of wild flowers – including many often referred to as weeds – can only enhance rather than detract from the experience of a walk by the river.
Not all will agree, but I suspect most people do not want to see sterile riverbanks of concrete and grass verges mown to within an inch of their lives.
If the river system in Salisbury is alive with wild flowers, birds, bees, butterflies, dragonflies and water voles, I for one will applaud the council for a job well done.
JAMES MACPHERSON, Salisbury
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