In November 2015 we cut down some collapsing Wild Damson
which was taken away by a Worker in Wood , Colin Norgate ( http://www.colinnorgate.co.uk/ ) Excellent craftsmanship.
It’s now in the process of being dried and looks very interesting. I’m about to supply some ash, I hope that works out as well.
The snowdrops in the wood were the first wild flowers flowering, but since I took the photo last weekend garden cyclamen, crocus and primroses bursting forth. Great.
We now have an empty barn owl box.
Barry & Madeleine who live in Greatham suggested that our wood could be a good location for owl boxes and Barry makes them – so now we have one specially designed as a des-res for a barn owl. We need to coppice a field maple to make a space for them to fly in easier which is just about to happen. We wait with bated breath, but it could be a while!
We have been coppicing a new area of the copse, trying to get some sort of rotation going. The last three years efforts look good. A friend helped and we did about 10 stools, it doesn’t sound much but some were large. We now have plenty of small wood for the fire, and hazel rods if anyone wants them. We also tried laying one to see if it will root as there are some areas which could do with filling in.
Came across this Hawthorn Shield Bug on one hazel I was cutting down. It didn’t shift so it went carefully with the cut stem.
In September I was leading walks in Provence for HF Holidays and spotted this very strange oak gall. It took me ages to identify it as
It’s amazing what a gall wasp can cause to happen.;
In the winter we coppiced a bay tree (Laurus nobilis), which had rather got out of hand. Some of the wood has been given to a woodworking friend to see if it will turn, it seems a fine grained wood, which smelled rather nice when being cut up. We’re not short of bay leaves for cooking with.
The coppicing has worked, photograph below, but possibly surprisingly the dear like it, even though the young shoots are very aromatic. Half has been heavily browsed, half has escaped. The culprit’s mug shot is below.