Tales from the Wood

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Norton's Woodyard

This is where most of my felled timber ends up; the splendid woodyard run by the Norton family.

While I was there, I picked up some fine oak logs, They've been down for a few years now, so should be partially seasoned, and they seem very tight and clear (with few shakes,side-branches or knots). Unusually, I was also able to find a lovely piece of English elm.

The douglas fir I sent down to the yard 2 years ago has now returned from the local sawmill. Now 'worked up' as construction timber, it's ready to build the new drying shed.

Now that sounds to me like the very definition of 'neighbourhood sustainability' (and not a grant in sight!)


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Ladles

There's still very little sycamore thinning to be done, so I've been using up some very nice oak, which I set aside some time ago. These four vessels are in oak with steam-bent chestnut handles.



Oak & Chestnut Black Vessels

Black Ceramics, Chestnut, Oak, Sycamore and Box

A real adaptive challenge : combining ceramics with wood.

After a lot of 'on the spot' experiments, I've just completed these 4 pieces. The fastenings turned out to be relatively simple. A reinforced hole in the ceramic body and either a sprung forged-wire handle or, as with the steam-bent chestnut, a metal peg, capped with boxwood.

The boxwood has been seasoning for 3 years and is incredibly tough to work (I'm told boxwood was once used to make hair combs) so in these pieces, as it's doing an important structural job, box it has to be.




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Hawkmoths

The moth trap produced two splendid hawkmoths last night. An eyed hawkmoth (Smerinthus ocelatta) which refused to show its eyed wings for the camera, and a poplar hawkmoth (Loathoe populi). Lots of micro moths too, which I have yet to identify - and probably never will !

Eyed Hawkmoth

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Wood Stack 2019

Just in time for summer seasoning: the double windrow of split timber for next winter.

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Layed Hedge and Spring Growth

The first section of hedge has now been layed, and after just a few weeks, the first signs of new growth are showing. Always amazing to think, that with just a few millimetres of stem left at the severed base, the sap still finds a way through.


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Hedge Leafing Up