Friday, 25 April 2014

Tree Planting and pollards in Wood Pasture at Troutbeck Park Farm.

Wood Pasture and Parkland.

An ancient and historic land management  system where livestock grazed amongst trees grown for timber.

These open grasslands, heath, and wetlands interspersed with mature and ancient trees are ecologically important, as well as being visually attractive landscapes.

A long term benefit of livestock, especially cows, feeding, trampling and fertilising the ground has resulted in a species rich habitat.

See Woodland Ranger Ben Knipe's post "Trees + Cows = Wood Pasture," for more details.

Cattle grazing beneath the veteran trees at Glenamara Park, Ullswater.  Image © Steve Dowson, Area Ranger. Ullswater. See post "Glenamara Park."

Nowadays, careful management is required to keep wood pastures at their best by... pollarding trees to extend their life span (See images below), cattle grazing, encouraging natural regeneration, and planting and protecting saplings which will eventually take the place of the existing old trees.

A lapsed ash pollard seen from above......

.....and below. Terrific habitat for a wide variety of wildlife, including bats and birds.
Usually pollarded every fifteen years.

A recently pollarded ash at Troutbeck Park Farm. The main branches are cut back close to the trunk which will promote dense regrowth. (The timber and brash stacked nearby). Pollarding slows down a tree's growth so pollards are capable of living to a great age. Older pollards often become hollow.

The National Trust has, in partnership with the tenant farmer, embarked on a major long term project to  improve the wood pasture at Troutbeck Park Farm. The work is grant aided by Natural England through the Higher Level Stewardship scheme.

Part of the project work involves tree planting and constructing tree pens to protect them during the early years.

Fell rangers and countryside Central and East Lakes rangers carrying  the materials for constructing "tree pens" up the slopes above Troutbeck Park Farm.

Back for more materials...... in Red Arrow formation.

A newly planted oak.

The tree pen taking shape.

The wide spacing between the newly planted trees will give them the potential to become iconic veterans in years to come....

No comments :

Post a Comment