Saturday, 29 May 2010

Fence mending at Marsden golf course

Philip, Dan and Guy hard at work.

Not a very nice morning, but worthy, and almost fun. Mending fences at Marsden golf course. These fences have been deliberately cut or broken down by human hands we think, but the upshot is that sheep can get into our recent planting and eat the young trees. Myself, Philip, Dan and Guy were there. And we had date and walnut cake. And found lots of golf balls. We have had to mend these fences before, so took very careful pictures of our finished work, so that we can say what state these were in on this date.

Hilarious picture of Philip, with a very small Dan tucked in his jacket.
Oh, and the fence we mended in the background.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Deer guarding at Green Hill Clough

Nice view back down towards Slaithwaite.

First day of summer work, and Philip, Neil and I were putting on deer guards up at Green Hill Clough above Marsden. Some of the oaks up there have been struggling over the last 3 or 4 years, and some say that it is deer that have been nibbling them. Brian did phone me the other night and said Muntjac deer had been spotted, and they have been spreading northwards in the last few years. Muntjacs are pretty voracious critters so we fear them. The deer guards are substantially taller than our usual tree guards (also more expensive!) and so should give the trees longer to get established. The three of us put on 50 new stakes and guards, and retrieved the old smaller stakes and guards for re-use. It was quite time consuming, getting up there and then finding which trees needed help most, but it was a lovely morning, and very peaceful up there.
Philip is in there somewhere, hidden by his Realtree shirt.

Monday, 10 May 2010

Fieldhouse site visit

This Monday evening, Philip, Duncan and I met Ramsay Bloom from Kirklees Council, on site at Fieldhouse Slaithwaite. This site has been under discussion for the last two years, but we hope to move forward with it in the 2010/11 season. Originally it had been suggested that this field be used as an experiment in wood fuel planting, but subsequent discussions, including that with Ramsay this evening suggest that it would be better to treat this as a more naturalistic community woodland area, with some limited woodfuel planting. We already have grant money to pay for arborial work to make safe some large dead trees at the rear of the site, to replace the access gate, and to plant a selection of native tree species across the upper and side parts of the field. It is a lovely site, with great views out over Slaithwaite. Ramsay explained that the field is what used to be the grounds of Fieldhouse, a large mill owners residence, which came into Council hands some years ago, and is now converted into flats. He also showed us the remains of the more formal garden at the bottom of the slope, where, hidden amongst the trees at the side of the road, are Victorian paths, rockery, trees and shrubs. We also discovered a guerilla allotment in the far corner of the field, which we will do our best to respect when we come to planting.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Bolster Moor Farm Shop - phase 2

Neil and Brian, a meeting of minds.

Here we are again at Bolster Moor Farm Shop, helping out a local business. Today we finished planting the heathers and ground covering plants in front of the car park. It was a lovely morning, with Brian, Neil, Richard, Roger and myself. Good view from up there, and it was a lovely clear day so we could see as far as Selby and the Drax power station, which must be 30 miles at least. Also on site were some young Scouts who had also been drafted in. A meeting of generations then.