GREEN-FINGERED youngsters from local primary schools have helped transform Neilston’s flower beds.

The village’s community council organised an overhaul of the community planters at Kirkstyle Lane.

Dozens of kids got stuck in with their trowels and high-visibility jackets.

Despite being just two years old, the flower boxes had already began to look grubby and untidy.

Neilston community council chairman John Scott said it was a pleasure the community council to organise the overhaul.

He said: “It seems to be one of life’s little paradoxes that as much as you look after your outdoor plants and try to suppress weeds, if you don’t keep at it constantly the weeds will always win.

“This is exactly what happened with the raised flower beds at Kirkstyle Lane, Neilston, which were commissioned as part of a local project by Neilston Community Council a couple of years ago and planted up by local schoolchildren. But with nobody tending them in the spring, the weeds took over.

“Since they had changed from an attractive feature to an eyesore in the course of a few months, Neilston Community Council was determined to restore this community asset to its original state.”

Weeds and old soil in the beds have been removed with new topsoil and compost put in to top them up and then covered in black fabric to allow the soil to settle and discourage weed growth.

All this, plus disposing of the debris, comes at a cost so the community council outlined its plans to an eco campaign called Action Earth.

A grant was approved and East Renfrewshire Council agreed to maintain the grass around the beds.

John continued: “The local primary schools – St Thomas’, Neilston Primary and Madras Nursery – were notified that the community council was looking for volunteers to plant bulbs and soon there were three squads of children lined up braving the bitter cold and ready to start work.

“A mixture of spring plants have been put in: snowdrops, crocuses, anemones, and assorted dwarf narcissi. I’m sure all the children are looking forward to see the results of their efforts.

“We would hope to have our local children put down bedding plants in late spring. It gets them interested in gardening and helps them learn new skills which they can use in later life. It would really help if we could get a small number of adults to help keep the beds in shape during the summer and autumn.

“With a few people, a half hour each a week would keep the beds weed-free and looking nice. If you can help, contact the community council through its webpage or Twitter, or come and see us.”

The community council meets in Glen Halls on the last Tuesday of the month at 7pm (no meeting in December or July).