Planting 6,000 trees

Farnley Estates is planning to plant around 6,000 trees during the planting season, which started in November 2013 and will finish at Easter time.

Around 2,000 trees, including oak, birch, cherry and chestnut, were planted before Christmas at various locations around the Estate. Traditionally considered indigenous to the English countryside, the mix of trees will maintain the ecological balance of our existing woodlands. A further 4,000 trees will be planted between January and April. It’s all part of the Estate’s commitment to conservation and good Estate management, and will help to make sure that the ancient woodlands will be around for future generations to enjoy.

“By continually planting new trees, we make sure we have a mix of trees of different species and different ages. It also helps to conserve the biodiversity of our wildlife by providing a range of habitats,” said Paul Elgar, Estate Manager.

In fact, a surprising amount of work goes on behind the scenes to keep the Estate’s woodlands healthy. Left to nature, woods develop a thick canopy of mature trees, which cuts out sunlight to the woodland floor and prevents the growth of brambles, bushes and young trees where ground-dwelling birds and animals live. As well as planting new trees, selective felling of mature trees, opens up the canopy allowing the undergrowth and associated wildlife to flourish.

“The variation in groundcover is vital for our wildlife. Brambles protect ground-nesting birds, while holly, which keeps its leaves in the winter, breaks up the deep snow allowing foraging animals to find food whatever the weather,” said Paul.

As well as maintaining existing woodland, the Estate’s extensive tree planting programme will also increase the overall area of the woodland in certain areas, and provide avenues of trees along some existing tracks and roads.