The Woodland at Croft is in the Countryside Stewardship Scheme and an element of that is to clear the Silver Fir from the eastern side of the Fishpool Valley and bringing sunlight back into that part of Highwood Bank. Much of this work began back in 2012 and has been ongoing with the help of fellow volunteers and a local scout group that came back again this year to help once more.
Most of the work involves removing naturally regenerated saplings but it also includes the identification of some veteran trees that have survived and are now at risk of being affected by the density of the trees that are growing up around them. To protect these older species the practice of ‘halo’ thinning is carried out; this involved creating what you might call a breathing space around these special trees by felling trees in close proximity to then.
The Halo thinning took place in November 2019 and by September this year 2020 the old oak had taken on a different appearance. The trunk had sprouted growth from bottom to top and is covered in a coat of oak leaves.
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