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Greening Cathays

Outdoor green spaces are proven to benefit wellbeing and resilience.

Research has shown that increased use of green spaces can reduce long-term health problems such as heart disease, cancer, and musculoskeletal conditions - and alleviate the severity of stress-related symptoms. Being around nature calms us and takes our minds off the business of everyday life and stressful situations.

In a recent survey of Cathays, residents indicated a desire for more green spaces in built up areas of the ward. In 2020, in partnership with the Pharmabees project, the council created three planters along the length of Fanny Street.

A planter in Cathays
A planter on Fanny Street at the beginning of March 2021


In the autumn of 2020, prior to lock down, the planters on Fanny street were seeded with:

  • miniature chrysanthemums
  • lavender
  • snowdrops
  • winter aconites
  • daffodils
  • snakeshead fritillaries
  • English bluebells

They were also seeded with an experiment  Cardiff university pollinator friendly wild-flower seed mix containing the following ten plants:

  • common knapweed
  • oxeye daisy
  • white campion
  • dandelion
  • cornflower
  • corn poppy
  • corn marigold
  • corn chamomile
  • white clover
  • bluebells

All of these plants have been introduced in an effort to create patches of green in an urban desert and to provide food for insects and birds. You can find out more information about these wildflowers from the Woodland Trust and the Wildlife Trust.

Get involved

Now that spring is returning and the end of lockdown is in sight we need to re-energize the project and to do that we need your help.

If you want to grow your own wildflowers with our Pharmabees seed mix please see our plant identification guide.

This scheme will increase biodiversity and reduce carbon emissions. By offering a safe haven and food source for local pollinators, rewilding areas allows insects such as bees to move into sunnier spaces, feeding on the nectar of wildflowers. With pollinator populations on the decline creating diverse habitats is essential to safeguard these vital members of the ecosystem.

We are also seeking community volunteers to help us tidy up, refresh and monitor the growth of the plants as life returns to the city.  We also need local volunteers to record the number and diversity of the insects which visit these plants over the course of the summer using the tools below:

This information will help us monitor the effects of climate change and local pollution on urban biodiversity.

Contact us