20 October 2021 – In February of 2021 The Mersey Forest Team were asked if they could help establish an amenity woodland on a currently unused field, on a farm near Northwich, Cheshire.
The landowner had several objectives for the woodland, including:
- enhancing the wildlife potential of the field
- becoming a carbon store
- for it to blend in with the existing landscape
In some cases, where the ridge and furrow are very prominent, tree planting may be not advised. As a precaution, the archaeology team at Cheshire West & Chester Council was contacted for their opinion, and it was determined that planting could go ahead.
Ground conditions, soil and existing vegetation were inspected as part of the team’s survey. The woodland was designed to blend in with the landscape. Tree species chosen were those growing well locally, and included oak, field maple, birch, alder, and willows. Trees were ordered from local nurseries.
In total, 440 trees were planted on the field by The Mersey Forest team in March 2021, with protection added in the form of short tree tubes along with mesh guards for shrubs to help protect them from browsing rabbit and voles.
Biodegradable mulch mats with degradable pegs were used to suppress weeds, and to keep the soil warm and moist. This care and attention has paid off, and regular inspections since the planting have seen the trees establish well.