Cae Trawscoed – A Flower Rich Hay Meadow

If you want to see wild orchids, you’ve come to the right place.

From May to July, you may get to see hundreds of orchids here – greater butterfly, southern marsh, common spotted and heath spotted orchids.

They thrive here because, since the late 1990s, we’ve been taking just one hay cut in late summer to allow plants time to flower and produce seed. We don’t add fertiliser – this has created low nutrient, healthy soils which allow wildflowers to thrive. These soils also absorb atmospheric carbon – helping us to fight climate change.

Wildflowers provide a rich larder of nectar and pollen for insects throughout the summer, and these in turn provide food for other creatures – lizards, hedgehogs and badgers feed here.

Our science team have used this meadow to work out which plants our bees and hoverflies feed from, using DNA. This information is helping conservationists protect meadow biodiversity across Wales.