Dancing with the trees

A busy Saturday. As a new routine, I use Saturday morning to walk the farm and do a bit of maintenance work while Monica goes to market. Looping around either above or below the farmhouse, I carry a rucsac of tools, a small scythe and a hoe with which I can correct most urgent problems. Now that Dongria has declared that Treesponsibility aren’t going to maintain the copses, I’m starting to pay attention to them.

Yesterday, I started at the top of the oak copse that abuts Warland New Wood and fettled about half an acre i.e. one fall. About 60% were grass-choked; 20% look like failing; and about 10% have already died. I decided to use coloured wool to mark the last two statuses: Orange for dead, blue for sad. That way I can look across a fall and estimate the number of new trees to source.

Talking with Monica, we had the idea that no new tree material should be brought onto the farm now that we have sufficient stock to take seed and cuttings from. For example, any new oak should be grown from old Warland Wood acorns.

I returned down the hill in time for lunch. It was a French & Breton dancing day so, after a brief snooze in the hammock, I dressed and we went to Hebden Bridge. The usual venue was locked, so the band had decamped to the Stubbing Wharf. At least there was beer to compensate for the lack of room. After the dancing, we ate fish and chips in the square before walking to the Fox and Goose for a beer. This is where the F&B musicians retire after the dancing to practice so it was pleasant to listen to them while boozing. Then, around 7pm, we staggered off to the Picture House to watch “A Royal Night Out”: unspeakably twee propaganda for the royal family—1.5 Daves—but it helped round out a very enjoyable day.

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