The best place currently to get into the woodland is the top corner of Big Field. As we went into the woodland the floor was a carpet of Wood Anemones and Celandine.
It was beautiful. We also found a few RedCampion flowers.
To the left on entering the woodland the fencing/boundary needs to be sorted as it looks like our neighbours’ stock is travelling into our woodlands and potentially eating our bluebells.
Dad and James ventured the furthest down into the woodland.
We found clearly stepped areas which would have been previously used by the coppice workers to access the lower areas of the woodland to work on the trees and coppice stools. The stepped areas are visible across the whole woodland, with areas where they need to be reintated and shored up along the way! There are a lot of hazel coppice stools along the topmost fringes of the woodland.
And lots of Old Oak trees through the woodland. We came across one that had ferns growing along its branches right the way to the top!
There is a lot of moss covering the trees in the woodland and Mum said that we would never have to worry about buying hanging basket liners again. Not sure if that is ever something I would worry about. We also noted that we have quite a bit of overstood coppice and some dead branches that would need to be sorted in the most part to support the woodland’s regeneration.
We all eventually came back up to the top path and meandered along it. The woodland has a lot of hazel, oak and sycamore. in the middle section of the woodland under Big Field there are two felled oaks, probably as a result of the winter storms this year. It looks like the one Oak’s heartwood has rotted and it snapped off taking the lower oak out with it! I shall need to get those out and planked or logged up and into the barn!
James looks like the cat that has got the cream in his photo!! Look at all the lovely slate the oak’s roots have pulled out! I wonder how hard it will be to extract a few bits!!! It would be very useful for paths, stone walling etc, but some big chunks won’t bit easy to get out at all!
Walking further along the top path we came across a badger sett!
James went down onto the next level of the woodland step and found another large entrance hole too! We saw more early evidence of bluebells too, but also some more evidence of our neighbours wooly friends hopping into the woodland and eating them! Venturing further along we found an old oven and some bags of rubbish dumped. These will need clearing in the fullness of time, probably when we have a skip on site. We found the remnants of a blackbird egg.
We then left the woodland… not through the bottom corner of Big field as the briars have taken over, but through what seemed to be the badger latrine under a load of blackthorn!