Friday, 11 December 2015

The holly and the ivy

Some pics from my new wood :-)

Week One, and one of the first things I did was plant some holly bushes along the road edge, in the hope of creating a bit of a privacy screen in future.

It's going to take some time ....
Twenty little bushes took me three whole hours of digging. It turns out the soil is mostly hard-packed flint - flint-and-chalk in the good places, and an exquisite mix of flint-and-clay in others - so I can safely say I will be keeping tree planting to a minimum in the future!

The other thing I had to deal with IMMEDIATELY was a tree that had fallen partially onto the road. We've had a series of gales recently.

Underneath all those leaves, what we had was a core of completely dead ash (?) girdled and weighted down by ivy:

Now, they tell you in arboricultural college and in tree books that ivy is not harmful to trees and doesn't kill them. I beg to differ. The ivy on this ash below is acting just like a strangler fig - there's literally no room for the tree to grow.

The Madeline tree ;-)
What's more, in winter the ivy in the canopy will act as a sail and catch the winter gales, increasing the chances of wind-throw - as happened to my dead stump above.

The answer is to collar the ivy, so that the top growth dies off.

 We've got to do this to every tree on the roadline. That'll keep us busy... :-)

1 comment:

Jo said...

Jeeze, you're going to get so muscly. Have you got your own chainsaw?