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william petts

Planting new woodland

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Hi everyone I remember following few posts on this topic back when I first joined this chat.

I'm hoping to speak to people who actively plant up new Woodlands on their land.

I'd be wanting it for a future crop for our firewood business.

So can someone help me shed light on the practicality if doing this.

I.e, what tree crop to plant? Thinking of birch? 

Cost of saplings?  Recommended nurseries to look at fir getting the saplings? 

Realistic time of growth for your chosen trees, time how long till harvest?

How much land do you think would need to be planted (minimum)to make it viable? 

Finally I truly believe we should all be actively pushing for replanting of trees.

Any help would be most appreciated

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Roughly:  Seedlings a bit less than 50p each (less if you buy more); tubes and stakes both a bit less than £1 each.   Deer fencing worth it if you're doing more than about a hectare (very roughly).      You can plant a couple of hundred a day if using stakes and tubes; several hundred if no individual tree protection.     Birch is what I would max out on too, though I'd always mix in some oak and cherry if you want native; sycamore if not so worried.  Maybe beech if it suits your ground.    (Might as well give someone the option of some timber 50 years down the line.)    WOrth noting that birch doesn't much like being in 4' tubes - they tend to shoot up and then blow over the following winter, so you might have to give them a bit of tlc a year or two after planting.


Go for it.  If you've got a bit of land then you can start as small as you want.  Get some trees in the ground. Then you can watch them growing while you spend the time trying to get your head round the grant schemes. 


 Our local nursery is Alba Trees  - you'll be able to find yours easy enough and develop a relationship.  Or Woodland trust, etc, will help you source small numbers of trees..       For what it's worth I've never bothered with weed protection - if you're doing the planting yourself and concentrate on scrafing properly then the seedlings seem to get away OK.

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On 20/02/2020 at 10:34, saintsman54 said:

Don't forget to look at the grant funding options 


Capital grant for farmers and land managers to create woodland: find out about payment rates and the rules for the scheme.


Got conned by the forestry commission and there woodland grant scheme which they have not paid out since 2015. Thankfully not a large amount of money but I certainly would not trust any government scheme.

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Historically   firewood was from coppice from native woodland  done on rotational cycles of  say 18yrs leaving a few standards for timber.


I like the above idea  but it might not give the yield of a plantation of some exotic species like euc etc but it would have less chance of failure not being a monoculture, and be good for biodiversity.





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Mixed trees would make sense in that you can harvest at different times, and it would also help biodiversity enormously. (Or might that be inefficient?) I wonder of the Govt will soon start to give grants for tree-planting to soak up all the carbon we are emitting. (Some of that carbon could be from kilns to dry wood for burning!) :)

Edited by AdamD

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Have a look at what grows locally to see what might thrive on your soil. I planted mine through the Woodland Trust MOREWoods scheme - think they still run it. Gives you a big discount on trees.


Birch self seeds like crazy here so I didn't buy any. Got masses coming up for free!


If you want quick growth, look at poplar and willow. I burn loads of willow - it doesn't last very long but gives out terrific heat. If you can get some resistant ash that would be a good crop but I wasn't allowed to order it.


Traditional coppice woods include hazel and chestnut.

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