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Wildlife, trees and plants at Green Castle Woods

Beehives were introduced in 2012 in the easternmost fields which are managed by a local volunteer group. In the summer look out for lizards sunbathing and a wide variety of butterflies such as the holly blue and moths such as the orange sallow and large beech argent. The site also supports an owl population which feeds on a variety of small mammals.

The northern boundary is part of the Carmarthen bay and Estuaries Site of Special Scientific Interest, a Special Area of Conservation and a European Marine Site.

Green Castle Woods is a diverse mixture of ancient woodland, new woodland, open ground habitats and hedgerows. The two blocks of  ancient semi-natural woodland are dominated by oak, with the more recently planted native woodland (1996) comprising a mix of birch, ash, alder, rowan and willow. The site includes six small fields which are managed as permanent pasture and grazed with Hereford cattle. As they have not been ploughed in living memory, some are botanically rich and contain locally important marsh orchids, yellow rattle and whorled caraway – the county flower of Carmarthenshire.

(Photo: WTML)

In 2012 the planting of traditional orchard fruit trees (including some Welsh) along with more modern varieties, was carried out to create an orchard in the less-botanically interesting easternmost fields.

Carpets of bluebell

In spring there are carpets of bluebell, wild garlic, wood anemone and primrose. Other flowers to look out for according to season are  fleabane, sneezewort, yellow hay rattle, devil’s-bit scabious, white eyebrights, purple knapweed, meadowsweet, ragged robin, orchids, wild daffodils and purple and flag iris. You might also spot bed straw, violets, cow parsley, enchanter’s nightshade, bilberry and dog's mercury.

In autumn there are toadstools and blackberries.