Monday, 25 June 2012

The Friends - a Case Study!

Woodland Trust

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Give your saplings a helping hand

I'm sure, like us, you want your trees to thrive but did you know the saplings you recently planted will be at their most vulnerable during the next five years?

Why not give them a helping hand by getting your community together for a 'mulch and munch' day, to include a well-earned summer picnic?

As well as providing a tasty treat for animals, young trees compete with grass and weeds for light, nutrients and water. One way that you can give your trees the best start is by weeding around their base.

Love it or loathe it, weeding increases your saplings' chances of survival and enhances their growth rate by reducing competition. If you can follow weeding by mulching the exposed base with a thick layer of bark chips, squares of old carpet or straw you'll be helping your saplings become stronger trees for future generations to enjoy.
© zorba the greek


Tree tidbits

Did you know that blackthorn supports over 100 species of insects and is the foodplant of caterpillars of the brown and black hairstreak butterfly? It's also the favourite nesting place of nightingales.

Although your saplings won't be producing berries just yet have a go at making sloe gin by harvesting sloes from local hedgerows this autumn. Here are two useful downloads: blackthorn factsheet and hedgerow tipples recipe pack.


Community stories

The Friends of Cuthill Park in Prestonpans, East Lothian wanted to improve the facilities and biodiversity of their park, helping encourage more local people to visit and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.

The group originally wanted to create a community garden but had no funding. After hearing about the Woodland Trust's free tree packs in the national press, Jan Barker applied for a Wild Harvest pack.

Jan says:

"The free trees for communities scheme has brought together a variety of local groups who now help each other out. It introduced me to the Woodland Trust and now my children are proud members of Nature Detectives.

Planting trees was the catalyst for so many more activities within our park. We have since gone on to purchase more trees, including heritage variety fruit trees, and create pathways. It has made our local authority take the efforts of the group much more seriously and we are now much more engaged with the council who consult us before carrying out maintenance.

We have a wildflower meadow and decorative railings planned for the park. We are now a designated QEII Field in Trust so our park is protected for ever – all because we began planting an edible hedgerow!"

Get inspired by this exciting project by clicking on the 'inspiration' tab...

And finally...

Have your trees been planted as part of a larger woodland project? Has your group considered creating a community woodland?

If the answer to either of these questions is yes, please spare 5 minutes to answer our short survey.

Don't forget if you know of more space locally that would benefit from trees you can apply now for another pack. Please do share this enewsletter with your friends - they might like some free trees to enhance their community too.

Beverley and Julia

The Woodland Trust community tree pack team

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Love Parks Week

Thursday, 7 June 2012

This fruitful land is your land

Dear all

I have put a petition to the Scottish Parliament - asking for the Scottish  Government to consider allowing people to use underused land for fruitful
food growing. This is before the Scottish Parliament petitions committee on
12th June. The petition is at

(unfortunately their petition software doesn't work! - so I've had to set up
a separate petition that people can actually sign)

I'm hoping to get 1000 signatures to present on the 12th June - so please do
this now. Please encourage people to sign the e-petition below - and pass it on.

All best


 John Hancox
 Tel 0778 606 3918