Sunday, 22 February 2009

Scotland Farm

Another week organised by Brian. This week were attempting to plant shelter belts across 5 fields on Scotland farm above Slaithwaite. We did our manful best, but I think we bit off more than we could chew. We had enough people for teams of 4/5 for three of the fields. In our field there were myself, Philip, Geoff and Duncan. We planted 136 trees in our first field, and then managed another 35 in the second. Our problem was that we were supposed to plant 300 trees in that first field, but there just wasn't enough room to plant them where the farmer wanted them. We were working in a narrow space between a dry stone wall and a barbed wire fence.  As I said, we did our best. I'm not sure how the other teams fared. Highlight of the morning though was being delivered bacon butties by quad bike. Very nice man that farmer. And we worked hard for him. But I do wonder what will happen to all the leftover trees, especially the bare-rooted stuff which will die pretty quick if not looked after right. Top photo shows the narrow gap we were working in. Bottom photo shows Duncan, Geoff and Philip enjoying coffee, scones, and the view.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Well House Farm

First week at Well House farm and there was still a fair amount of quite crusty snow on the ground. It wasn't as bad as it looked though, and with a generous number of volunteers we planted around 300 trees. Lots of Hawthorn, in a big hedge up one side fo the field, then some Holly, Hazel, Oak and Scots Pine in the lower part of the field. Lots more trees to plant here, so we will be back in a couple of weeks. This field has been very well fenced by the landowner, and Brian and Duncan were unable to escape.

We haven't staked or guarded the trees here yet, we are waiting on a batch of coil guards and canes, which Guy is sourcing for us. Todays cake was a rather nice Bakewell mincemeat hybrid. An excellent and thoroughly enjoyable mornings work.

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Oh snow you don't! Formative pruning at Royd House Wood

Dear Simon
I thought I'd have a go at your blog in your absence - is this ok? Phillip was going to try and email me some photos but they might not materialise!
A change of plan this week due to the weather; the site we were meant to be planting at in Marsden was inaccessible because of the snow so we stayed closer to home and did some maintenance at Royd House Wood. We had a good turnout considering with Phillip, Guy, Neil, Duncan & Heidi. Royd House Wood is a site just down the road from the Nursery in Linthwaite planted some years ago by the society where we did a lot of thinning out last season; today we spent a gloriously sunny morning in a different part of the wood pruning oak trees plus a rather attractive avenue of lime trees. The wood did look quite Narnia-esque in the snow, but lopping off bits of trees did incur the occupational hazard of getting lots of white stuff down the back of your neck. Sadly due to the absence of Simon we were also bereft of Simon's Mum's cake, so we had to make do with a packet of chocolate hob nobs from my bag, circa. 2006.
Best Wishes