If you've wandered around Bridport lately you may have noticed that the planting boxes and troughs are now full of summer plants.

This year the plant boxes will look slightly different.

Groves Nurseries, Bridport Town Council and Bridport Gardening Club have teamed up to replace the usual summer bedding plants with pollinator-friendly perennials.

Around 20 flower boxes around Bridport town centre including the LSi, town centre and Bucky Doo Square have been turned into 'pollinating patches' to help with the pollinating insect population.

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Becky Groves, nursery manager at Groves Nurseries, said: "Insect populations have taken a massive decline due to loss of habitat and chemicals so it is important we take action as a community.

"It does make a difference to pollinators.

"They can have pit stops around the town between people's gardens.

"Gradually throughout the town, we are putting pollinator pitstops.

"Plus people might see what we are doing and do it in their own gardens."

Whilst these flower boxes are usually full of flowers for the summer, the perennials are better pollinators than most of the usual occupants. They have single flowers, a long flowering period are low maintenance and are adaptable.

It is hoped that these flowers will help several insects to pollinate: including bumblebees, solitary bees, wasps, hoverflies, moths, butterflies and some beetles.

Bridport and Lyme Regis News:

Pollinators have been on the decline in recent years. According to statistics on the status of pollinating insects from The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, there was an overall decrease in the pollinator indicator from 1987 onwards. In 2019, the indicator had declined by 21% compared to its value in 1980. The study concluded that both in the short term and long term, the number of pollinators was declining.

It will take a few weeks for the boxes to fill out but they are expected to be a beautiful addition to the town once they have.

Becky added: "The Bridport Gardening Club are very kindly looking after the plants throughout the year. Without the club looking after them it wouldn't happen. It is a real community project."

The plants used include geranium ‘rozanne’; geranium sanguineum; verbena bonariensis ‘lolipop’; geum ‘totally tangerine’; nepeta and stachys lantana.

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The project is part of a community effort to create a 'Bee Friendly Bridport'. The group aims to take action to support pollinators, and how these actions can have a positive effect on the natural ecosystems and biodiversity within Bridport and its surrounding area.