Tuesday 8th December 2015

Simple today. Woodland management. We attended to a neglected hazel coppice in the corner of the field. All day.

First we cleared out the wild cherry suckers. The too-big cherry tree itself will be downed at the weekend when the chainsaw is coming to fell some equally too-large larches. We clear the brash, make a “habitat pile”, then look at the hazel. Some of the stools have not been coppiced for far too long and are gnarly, wiggly, too branched for for anything but firewood. Others are perfect and we cut and sned over 80 stout bean poles for next season. The trimmings will make pea sticks or more habitat pile. Then tackle the older stuff – saw and stack it to take down to the woodstore to season for cooking fuel and kindling. Now all the hazel is cut almost to ground level and will be left to regrow for about 7 years. We will coppice other bits of hazel around the place in the meantime – poles should last two or three seasons – giving us a continuous supply of free home-grown materials.

And that’s kept us busy all day. Only one small job to do – throw out the last few picked beans that haven’t dried at all, but in the damp mild weather of the last week have just got smellier and mouldier. Compost fodder.

We’ve had sunshine all day, but now a steely grey cloud rolls over and drenches us, and then the sun shines again. There’s a rainbow – a strong one.

Glorious day.

Tuesdays in the Triangle Field (Community Supported Market Garden) are busy, sociable, friendly, relaxed, productive. Volunteers are made welcome, fed, watered and rewarded with produce. Let us know if you would like to join us either regularly, occasionally or just for a one-off pleasure.
Tel. 01743 761418 email: crabapplecom@hotmail.com

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