Plants and Habitat
Every year we plant flowers around the town, usually in April, and maintain those plantings throughout the summer. This work dates back to the early days of the tidy town initiative, in the 1950s, when the Irish Countrywomen’s Association encouraged members to plant flower gardens to improve the outskirts of towns for the spring Tostal celebrations.
Over the years, the emphasis has shifted from annuals to perennials, especially pollinator friendly plants, as at the Grotto. More recently, we have planted wildflower meadows – at Ballyrafter and in front of the Intreo building – to provide habitat for pollinators, other insects, and birds. As well as being environmentally sustainable, these plantings are also less labour intensive.
Two community orchards were planted in 2021, at Bankfield and Lios an Óir. Twelve apple trees were planted, all heritage varieties once common in Ireland but no longer easily come by. In a few years, residents will be able to sample their produce.
Despite a national anti-litter campaign in 1979, littering is still a problem, and not just in Lismore and Ireland but also around the world. Dealing with it still takes up a considerable amount of our time and resources.
Over 100 residents take part in the neighbourhood litter roster from March to October. Each spring, and on occasion throughout the summer, volunteers clean litter from the approach roads. In the winter, eight volunteers spend weekend mornings picking up the litter on Main Street, in Millennium Park, and along New Way. Community staff conduct litter pick-ups throughout the year, and of course, council staff empty the litter bins and pick up the bags of rubbish gathered by volunteers.
Littering – the improper disposal of an item – is responsible for much of the plastic and other waste now floating across our oceans, washing up on our beaches, and coursing through our bodies. Litter also generates litter – people are more likely to litter in a place that is already littered and untidy. The work done by our volunteers to clean up litter is invaluable, for us, our environment, and future generations.
A glass-bottle collection site was established in 2000 at the entrance to St. Carthage’s Home. Five stainless steel tubes inserted into the perimeter wall of council’s storage yard allow for easy disposable of bottles into the bins behind, which are emptied by council staff.
In 2019, a receptacle for easy collection of plastic bottles was placed at the entrance to the Millennium Park and the playground, where there is also a bin for aluminium cans.