Friday, 4 April 2014

Hybrid Willow Coppice - Two Plots Planted

With my talk of planting a hybrid willow coppice some family (smallholder) friends said that they'd started to plant one last year and would I like some cuttings. They planted around 700 cuttings and as you have to cut them back after the first year they had plenty of wood spare.
 They gave me around 200 cuttings which is plenty for me to be going on with. It's two different varieties Q83 and Chinese.
 This is enough for two out of my five plots that I'll be growing on a short rotation coppice (SRC). So last Saturday I marked the two plots out with 1 metre spacings so all the cuttings would be going in at 1m x 1m square (which is what I've read is recommmended on some websites).
 I put the cuttings in by making a hole with a metal bar (an old muck rake tine) then pushing them into the wet ground leaving about 2 inches showing. I plan to mulch round it all quite soon with wood chip, as I'm meant ot have a few loads coming my way, this should stop it having to complete with the grass and keep other weeds down.
My little helper did get a bit distracted towards to end of the job though!
Hopefully I should see some growth in the next month or so. I've got to get the airgun charged up to make sure I keep the rabbits numbers down, as apparently they don't react well to being chewed by the white tailed little blighters (mind you what tree does!).
Anyone else planting trees for firewood at the moment?


  1. I have never known this plant before. I hope you will make some posts about the progress. Thanks for sharing

  2. I find that grass is terrible for suffocating trees when they are small. You could turn the turf upside down and use the bar to make holes and plant through them or get some Mypex landscape fabric and mulch with well rotted manure and the wood chips. You can also buy plastic tree guards to stop you ring barking them when you strim the grass down.

  3. Lucky you getting to plant that beautiful tree ! I love willow trees but in Australia it is against the law to sell willow trees because they go crazy on our river banks and become a weed. We do have one willow tree though and it is so beautiful to look at.

  4. The best way to keep the grass down round young trees is to simply let it get a bit long at first and then tread it flat with your boots in a circle around the new sapling. This then acts as an anchor in high winds and slows the growth of the grass down. Of course doing this 200 times will make for a very dizzy day :-)

    Trees for firewood is ALWAYS a good idea. Once we have our new trees in we will be looking to start sorting out our woodland in small sections.


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