Our trees faired well through the strong winds over the Christmas period, with only one Giant Fir blown down on the edge of the bluebell wood and some minor branches elsewhere. Januarys main focus is on the coppice, planning and timing of works within the areas of silver birch, hazel and sweet chestnut all depends on what the material will be used for. Birch is mostly used by Botanic Garden staff for plant supports so is cut mid-late March to prolong its whippy/bendy nature, and the hazel and sweet chestnut is mostly used for hedge-laying so can be cut from any time now. Also for the first time ever we now have our woodland barn to hide in for a warm cup of coffee!
Our regular volunteer work parties have been devastatingly effective as normal. In the last two months we have removed two large areas of Rhododendron ponticum, these areas included halting the spread of the Rhododendron into the bluebell wood and the other has opened up an exciting new planting for all our new plants in the temporary nursery.