Whin Grassland

In the county of Northumberland, Whin grassland grows on the shallow, drought prone soils of the Whin Sill. The Whin Sill is a very tough quartz-dolerite volcanic (igneous) rock formation.

Whin grassland is a special assemblage of species that is confined to outcrops in Northumberland running from Lindsifarne to Hadrians Wall. Dolerite is an extremely hard rock favoured for road building and there are several active quarries extracting this store.

Recently Dr Phil Putwain has investigated the flora and soils of Whin grassland in preparation for creation of new Whin grassland on quartz-dolerite substrates in a worked out section of an active quarry. He was delighted to find specimens of the rare maiden pink (Dianthus deltoides) at one Whin grassland site.

Commissioned by CEMEX via SK Environmental Soultions, ERS has developed a generic scheme of Whin grassland creation.

CIEEM Conference 2018

Dr Phil Putwain gave a presentation at the CIEEM Autumn Conference ‘Advances in Ecological Restoration and Habitat Creation’, Glasgow, 2...