Saturday, 23 February 2013

Another 500+ trees planted at Parkwood

Ropey photo I know, but you can see the nascent hedge, and all the trees planted in the field in the distance.
Today we we planted 300 Hawthorn and 200 Ossier Willow at Parkwood, plus some Oak. The Hawthorn will formed a hedge along the top edge of one of the fields. This hedge can later be used for hedge laying practice. The Ossier Willow has been planted for a source of basket making materials, and filled a small area next to the Hawthorn hedge, and also made up what will be a Willow hut next to the Golcar food co-ops allotments. The Willow hut was planted by Richard and Rob, and the other members of the Golcar co-op.
Tree Society folk were: Ben, Philip, myself, Stephen, Peter, Hap, Geoff, Remy, Duncan (and Harvey the dog) and Dave. Planting some oaks in the adjoining field were Brian, Peter, Ramsay, Trevor and Dianne. Cake was a very nice coconut and lime sponge.

Then we retired to the Sair in Linthwaite for our mid-season meeting. Dianne provided us all with soup and bread. And the meeting went quickly as several present wished to get home to watch the rugby.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Parkwood and Pasture Wood, again.

Philip, Guy, Dave, Andrew, Hap and Stephen
Today we split into two groups again, the senior team going to Parkwood, Golcar and rest visiting Pasture Wood, Marsden. The day started frosty and a little cloudy but gradually warmed up and by eleven o'clock it felt warm and sunny, even Spring-like. We planted in excess of 150 Scots pine and Italian alder at Pasture Wood. As with all the work here this season, these quick-growing, hardy species are being planted amongst the existing trees to try and improve their slow growth rate on this exposed site by providing more shelter from the elements. It's slow going here as the terrain is so steep and uneven and much time is spent getting about the site and trying not to fall over. It's hard work. Also, the nature of the work does not help as infilling with trees ranging over a wide area makes the  ergonomics of the process hard to optimise. Despite Simon's absence we had cake courtesy of Simon's Mum and Philip who picked it up from Marsden on the way to the site. It was a delicious light fruit cake. At Pasture Wood we were, Geoff, Philip, Andrew, Stephen, Hap, Ben, Dave, Remy and Guy. Not sure of the exact turnout at Parkwood (or what trees were planted) but definitely present were, Brian, Trevor and Peter, and with a rare guest appearance from Bob. Afterwards Philip and Guy went off to a pruning event at Old Ground organised by Duncan.


Cop Hill with Scouts

The Cop Hill plantation was planted some 16 years ago. A very difficult site, very high up and a former tip area. Initial planting struggled but subsequent planting of Italian alder has resulted in a decent copse. Last Saturday Huddersfield North Scout leaders were on a training weekend camping in the nearby Scout wood at the top of Merrydale. Guy and Phillip gave an introduction and trained on the maintenance / mangement of the copse which included planting an additional 15 Italian Alder. Tree guards and stakes were removed, the oaks were formatively pruned  and any larch that were shading the oaks had the shading branches removed. About 16 workers including Guy, Phillip and myself completed the maintenance. It would be great to plant an under storey of holly within the copse to secure the site. Duncan.

Saturday, 9 February 2013

500 tree challenge! Surpassed!

These people planted 550 trees today. Photo by Duncan.
Today we were at Parkwood, Golcar, and I'd set an informal, and quite optimistic, target of 500 trees to plant. We did about 550! Well done everybody. We were: Philip, myself, Remy, Duncan (and Harvey the dog), Trevor, Peter, Stephen, Brian, Peter, Hap, Andrew, Dave, Geoff, Dianne, Ramsay, Pierre-Alexandre, Maxime, Claudine, Edouard, and Rob. We planted 255 Downy Birch, 240 Hornbeam, and around 70 Willow. Cake was a nice seed-laden flapjack. Things got a bit loud in the Sair later as our several retired teachers railed against the state of state education.

Maxime hard at work planting, while Philip and Andrew idly chat.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

Planting trees and chasing sheep

Dave's strange animal hat has been with us for many years.
First, lets get the statistics out of the way.
Friday, Dave took 140 stakes and 120 deer guards to Parkwood.
Saturday, Richard took 270 stakes and 180 deer guards to Parkwood.
Saturday, Brian took 120 stakes and 120 deer guards to Parkwood. And 150 Lime trees.
After Saturday's planting there were 185 Alder and 365 Scots Pine left at Pasture Wood.

We were in two crews again. Brian, Trevor, Duncan (and dog), Ramsay, Dianne and Jess went to Parkwood. And planted 100 Lime, guarded another 60 Lime.

Myself, Philip, Dave, Cath, Geoff, Remy and Stephen went to Pasture Wood, where we planted an unknown number of Scots Pine. The reason we were not sure how many we got planted was we spent some time removing 9 sheep from the site. Dave acted as shepherd, the rest of us as the dogs. And it worked pretty well. The sheep needed removing, they had been eating some planted but unguarded Scots Pine, and even nibbling Alder which were still in their boxes. Philip thought the sheep had been deliberately put on site after our appearance in the paper two weeks ago, but that may be a little paranoid.

After planting Philip and I went to meet Julie from Friends of Slaithwaite Station to talk about planting for them. We agreed that we would plant around 25 trees, a mix of Hawthorn, Rowan, Oak, Blackthorn and Whitebeam on the grass verge of the car park.

Dianne, Ramsay, Brian, Jess and Trevor at Parkwood
All in all a productive and very enjoyable morning in bright cold sunshine.