Tales from the Wood

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Adapting with Douglas
Logging up those Douglas firs, you couldn’t help but notice some very tempting ‘clear’ sections - no knots, straight grain, splits like an ice cube in warm gin. So I got into the workshop with a couple of billets and took out the froe, sawhorse and steambox. No idea where this was going, which I guess is always a good start for the adaptive practitioner !


Halo Thinning
At the east end of the wood the douglas firs are getting pretty dense and crowding out the broadleaves (mostly oak but with birch and some fine sweet chestnuts). Halo thinning is a technique used to clear around specific specimen trees so reducing competition, it makes much less of an impact than clear felling (both to the environment and the woodsman ). This will be the last disturbance in the wood until after the nesting season, but even so, It is vital to keep a watch for early signs of nesting activity and I’ve been monitoring this area since mid January. These particular douglas’ are about 30 metres tall and although mere striplings by comparison to the Reelig Glen specimen in Inverness of 66.4m they are still a hefty tree to fell. With a lot of help from some very able friends (who also own wood stoves) we felled 7 trees and gave this lovely little oak some most welcome breathing space.