Barton Meadows is a nature reserve that’s full of surprises. Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust began managing the site in Winchester back in 2017, when it was a neglected patch of arable farmland with little value for wildlife. Since then we have been reverting the meadows to their former flower-rich glory, and the results have been spectacular.
Last year, beautiful deep red poppies sprung up all over the nature reserve, creating a striking blanket of scarlet across the meadows. This was a surprise to everyone, including ourselves. We had scattered wildflower seeds around the reserve, but had not planted poppies. We were amazed at the number of seeds that must have been lying dormant beneath the earth, waiting for an opportunity to show their colours.