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Hello from kent :)

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Hello from kent :)

Postby stevem099 » Fri Feb 06, 2015 9:14 am

Hello all!
Firstly great forum spent ages reading things and learning on here.
I've always enjoyed walking through the woods but didn't know there was so much work involved behind the scenes.
I don't own any woodland but joined more for information..
I'd like to plant a tree with my girlfreind for Valentine's Day (she's not into the chocs and flowers) but I don't own any land or garden..does anyone know of anywhere in kent (I'm based in Ashford) I could do this? Am I allowed to do it in public woods? Or would any private wood owners be willing?
Any advice or tips especially the legality side would be greatly appreciated.
Many thanks
Steve
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby oldclaypaws » Fri Feb 06, 2015 11:31 am

Welcome. The tree planting is a nice idea, I just did it for my godson, planting a Small Leafed Lime to mark his 18th, but for you there are a couple of logistical considerations. Any young tree needs to be protected from deer, so it needs a protective tube round it and probably to be staked. I'd imagine both public and private wood owners have long term plans for their woods and wouldn't welcome just any old tree of your choice being planted, it would have to be one that fitted in with their future vision, and preferably the right species for the habitat; shade tolerant, acid loving, good compliment to existing trees, etc. Their are certain trees that are considered invasive or inappropriate that many landowners would object to, such as sycamore, rhododendron bushes, alianthus, various conifers, and of course due to Chalara virus Ash tree movements are currently illegal.

If you google 'sponsor a tree', there are numerous charities and worthwhile causes inviting you do so, although you probably won't be able to see your individual tree which is what I guess you'd like to do.

Many private owners might agree its a nice idea and be happy for you to do so, but there remains the thorny issue of access. As I replant my wood once its thinned I could have 500 strangers each paying for one, but if they all wanted to check up on it occasionally, the wood would be teeming with uninvited visitors trampling on the ground flora. A tricky balance. Perhaps you need to befriend a woodland owner or you could ring round a few public bodies like the Council to ask if they would be happy for you to plant one locally such as in a park.

Nice idea, you young softie. I get great pleasure looking every day at my new trees, they are just starting to bud, can't wait for them to flower for the first time and see insects feeding on them, its a bit like replanting Eden.
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby stevem099 » Fri Feb 06, 2015 12:44 pm

oldclaypaws thank you very much for your reply.. I had to google small leafed lime but what a stunning tree :) very nice idea.. I totally see what you mean about owners having long termed plans for there woodland and people walking everywhere to visit their trees. Recently in my favorite local woods which I walked as child and still now (26) they started cutting large sections down all of a sudden much to my shock and horror.. But after a little chat with the guy doing the work I learnt it was all perfectly normal woodland care And that woodland was long over due..so I'd hate to plant something in the wrong place and then find one day it's gone! I hadn't thought of asking the local council I'll get onto that. However I've probably left it a little late now. I've not really decided on any type of tree so I'd be very willing to plant what I was told to and pay for all the necessary stuff . The only other option I could think of was to maybe plant in a big container untill I'd found a location if any one has any advice on that?
Many thanks again
Steve
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby oldclaypaws » Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:23 pm

The potted tree is a great idea, you could keep it pruned and 'Bonsaied' until you found the right site for it. Theres then the question of what species, which is really your call. Cherries are slow growing, native, good for wildlife, and you have the wonderful blossom. There are both wild and bird cherry. Limes are attractive and do well in the SouthEast, all of the SouthEast used to be forested with Lime during the 'Wildwood' following the last ice age.

Just planted some Cherries and Lime along with some Wild Service Trees (aka 'Chequer trees')- they are a bit special and would do nicely in Kent, its our rarest native; flowers, great for wildlife, interesting edible fruit, wonderful timber.

A tree would be happy in a large pot until you found a home, just remember to water (but not over-water) it and prune if it gets a bit big for the pot.
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby stevem099 » Sat Feb 07, 2015 5:40 pm

I've done some research and I really like the wild service tree.
Having some trouble working out what size pot would be suitable. May just go to the garden center and buy the biggest one I can find :) one question I do have Is I've been reading about trees lifespan. But I couldn't find it for the chequer tree. Any ideas?
Thanks again
Steve
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby oldclaypaws » Sat Feb 07, 2015 6:36 pm

The Wild Service tree has almost legendary status in Europe and is probably the single most prized timber, being used for prestigious uses like gun stocks, musical instruments and furniture veneer, it can sell for many thousands of pounds per cubic metre, so is often harvested before it reaches veteran age to ensure optimum timber value. Life span is according to different sources from 120 to 400 years, so it'll see you out.

There seems to be some pretty steep prices for saplings out there. I got a couple of 5ft ones from Perrie Hale nurseries in Devon for about £10 each, which seemed good.

Further wild service info here;

https://diebodenkultur.boku.ac.at/volltexte/band-60/heft-3/nicolescu.pdf
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby stevem099 » Tue Feb 10, 2015 5:06 pm

Thanks for all your help. I brought a Lovley tree today it's about 7ft and was quite a bit more money but after reading up on the tree and looking at lots of pictures it had to be that one and I'm really happy with it! Hopefully she will like it as much as I do lol. It's covered in buds already as well! All I need now is some land so I can buy lots more trees :) thanks again oldclaypaws
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby Rankinswood » Tue Feb 10, 2015 5:56 pm

Hi,

I don't want to be a party pooper but the Wild Service tree is prime squirrel food and young trees will be bark stripped in short order.

The days of growing trees in the UK to the proportions that can be seen on the continent are over. Mainland Europe is not (yet) plagued by the grey squirrel.

I have seen quite large trees in Hertfordshire but these were obviously planted / grown a long time ago before arrival of the greys.

The best place to see Wild Service in the UK is in the Isle of Wight. This island does not (yet) have grey squirrels, still having a good population of native red squirrels. The Wild service tree was widely coppiced in IOW woodlands.

Rankinswood
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby oldclaypaws » Tue Feb 10, 2015 6:48 pm

You could say the same about beech, sycamore, oak, maple, or any smooth barked tree, being pessimistic about the trees prospects is a bit doom-mongering at this point, its by no means certain it will ever be damaged by squirrels. We're about to hear the new DEFRA initiative about grey squirrel control which may help keep them in check a bit. Squirrel damage is a risk any young tree runs and all land owners always have the option if planting trees to take squirrel control measures. I have greys, I have young wild service trees, so far (touch wood) no damage. I'd go as far as to say there's little squirrel damage evident in my wood apart from a couple of slightly nibbled sycamore boughs and the odd oak shoot. If it starts to become a problem I'll take action and have an addition to our diet.

I think we should look for the positives and congratulate Steve on his new tree, it'll be quite safe in a tub until he finds a suitable location for it. He might even end up on the Isle of Wight or living on the Continent, you never know how life turns out. If concerned about squirrels I suggest next Valentines he buys her either a pine martin, buzzard, large fit puddycat or air rifle. Let us know if she likes it, if not I'd keep the tree and ditch the girlfriend. Good trees are hard to come by y'know. :lol:
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Re: Hello from kent :)

Postby stevem099 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 10:22 pm

Hi all :)
Just thought id drop by and let you know she loved the tree! She goes out most mornings with her tea to have a look at it :)
I imagine it will be fine where it as at the minute it's quite a built up area and the squirrels will have to get passed the packs of urban foxs before they get to the tree :)
Thanks again for all your help and great ideas for next Valentine's Day oldclaypaws hahaha
I'll still read the forum and hopefully one day will be asking more questions again concerning my own woodland :D
Cheers steve
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