Calling All Nature Detectives

We’re encouraging families to explore the great outdoors this half term by joining our Symondsbury Nature Detectives with a FREE nature-themed scavenger hunt (until Sunday 30th October). If your kids or grandkids are inquisitive and love a challenge, and you’re looking for a fun activity to do with them, then come and join us this October.

Pop into the Visitor Centre and pick up a trail sheet, follow the clues to find all of the natural treasures around the Estate and check them off the list. Once completed, collect a biodegradable pot, some compost and a marker from the Visitor Centre to plant your seeds ready to take home!

It’s a great way to get the kids closer to nature and explore Autumn’s natural wonders in Symondsbury.

Autumn Seeds and Berries Scavenger Hunt

  1. Pick up a clue sheet at the Symondsbury Estate Visitor Centre (next to Colmers Hill Fashion Boutique and opposite the Home & Garden shop)
  2. As you explore the Estate, solve the clues and spot the seeds and berries that are abundant in our hedgerows
  3. Tick them off or take photos of the seeds and berries as you see them
  4. Come back to the Visitor Centre to claim your badge when you’ve completed the scavenger hunt – and wear it with pride. Now you’re a Symondsbury Estate Nature Detective!


Grow your own plants from seeds

When you return to the Visitor Centre to receive your badge, we will also give you a pot in which you can plant some seeds to take home and grow yourself. You’ll be able to grown them in your own garden or in pots next year.

You can choose from the following seeds, all gathered from plants across Symondsbury Estate:

Cornflower: We grow a variety of Cornflowers at the Estate and this is a mix of different ones. They make excellent cut flowers and attract bees, butterflies and other pollinating and beneficial insects. Although blue is the most common colour, white, red, pink and purple varieties are also available. Cornflowers grow and flower best in sunny positions.


Phacelia: Also known as ‘Fiddlesticks’, Phacelia can grow up to 1.2m tall and is wonderful for bees and other pollinators. It also makes a beautiful cut flower, with its fern like green leaves and lavender-blue summer flowers. They enjoy full sun but can also tolerate low temperatures, potentially surviving mild winters.


Buddleia: As its common name, Butterfly Tree, suggests, Buddleia are a favourite source of nectar for butterflies. They are easy to grow and thrive in almost anywhere, but they will attract more butterflies and bees if they are grown in a sunny spot. They can grow quite big so give them lots of space when you plant them out.



How to plant and care for your seeds:

  1. Fill your pot two-thirds to the top with soil
  2. Take a pinch of your chosen seeds (5-6 seeds) and sprinkle them across the top of the soil
  3. Cover them with a light layer of soil
  4. Write the name of the seeds you chose and your name on a lolly stick and pop that in the pot as a reminder
  5. Take the pot home and place it in a cool sheltered space over the winter
  6. Keep the soil in the pot damp, watering with a few drops 2 or 3 times a week
  7. When they germinate in the Spring you will see little green shoots pushing through the soil. When these are 4-5cm tall either plant the whole pot into the ground, or carefully take out each seedling and plant them a few cm apart in the ground or a bigger pot


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