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Apprentices unveil new floral display outside Cardiff Castle

Credit: Cardiff Council

Visitors to Cardiff Castle have been admiring the latest floral design gracing the grounds outside the popular city landmark.

The Badge Bed Bee is the work of Ruby Mason, a second-year horticultural apprentice with the Council’s parks team.

“I went with this design to celebrate pollinators and to raise awareness of their importance,” said Ruby, 24. “Habitat loss and climate change, as well as pesticide use, are threatening the native bee population and we all need to play our part in safeguarding them and the environment.

“Around 75% of our crops are pollinated by bees so the least we can do is give them a helping hand in the work they do.

“In the winter, the queen leaves the hive and while the workers hibernate she finds a separate place to sleep. If you make a log pile, leave leaf litter on the ground and make a wild area full of grass moss and cover it will give her a safe home.

“And if you are a gardener, growing purple, blue, white and yellow flowers helps because bees can see them better.”

Jennie Judd, Ruby’s operational manager, said: “I’m extremely proud of what Ruby has achieved with her planting scheme, which has been created using recycled flowers and plants from elsewhere around the city’s parks.

“Her work – helped by Ginny, Kev, Jordan, Tom, Mary, Ann and Marion from the Bute Park nursery – demonstrates the skills she is learning and has given her an opportunity to share her creativity linked to such an important topic.

“It is wonderful to see that an apprentice can achieve such great success and have their work put on display in such a prominent location in Cardiff.”

Ruby is just one of more than 25 trainees who have secured permanent jobs with Cardiff Council through its award-winning traineeship scheme.