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Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Woodland management in Riddy Wood, day 2

It has just St started raining after a beautiful day so I have retired to bed in Riddy Wood. I can still see the flickering of  the camp fire from my shelter and am planning an early night after a hard days work. 

I have been coppicing elm today and it has been really fun, often in Riddy Wood the felling is a pain because, as it hasn't been managed for so long and is in many ways derelict there is often a lot of tangled blackthorn to get through or trees with rotten tops that threaten to drop limbs on you as you work on them at ground level but this elm has been lovely. It's mostly tall and strait with not too much brash at the top so felling and cross cutting it is fairly strait forward. 

A Robin has been following me around all day as I've been working which is nice and I've seen green and greater spotted woodpeckers, coal tits, great tits, wrens, kestrels, grey partridges, pheasants, buzzard and raven.

I've also coppiced some spindle today, spindle gets it's amen from the fact that it's wood has in the past been used to make... Yes you guessed it, spindles. It's incredibly hard and has also found use a ox goads, tooth pics and skewers. In the states it's sometimes known as burning bush due to the bright seeds making it look as if it's on fire.

The seeds are poisonous, in extreme cases potentially fatal but this is unlikely. I'll be experimenting with the wood for some whittling and carving projects but may also use some of the smaller stems to make some charcoal pencils.

More tomorrow 


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