It’s feeling Festive!

Here at Dedham Vale Tree Surgery we are already starting to feel the Christmas spirit as we notice more and more of our lovely customers in Essex and Suffolk have their Christmas decorations up. If like me your Christmas shopping is not yet complete what about considering a Forestry England membership as a gift? Research shows spending time in nature, especially woodlands, improves our health and wellbeing. If you would like to know more about this please use the link below:

https://www.forestryengland.uk/membership/gift

As usual Dedham Vale Tree Surgery will close for a couple of weeks over Christmas to give everyone a chance to have a good rest and come back revived ready for 2021. We wish all our customers a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Storm damaged trees

So the recent fallout from storm Francis has brought in some emergency work in both Manningtree and East Bergholt with not only windfall branches and trees down but also one tree struck by lightning.  A road in Dedham was recently blocked by a fallen willow but it was a Colchester council owned tree so the Highways Agency dealt with it rapidly.
This coming week I am my own customer as sadly my Pseudoacacia tree has died.   Sometimes trees do have a dormant phase where it appears they may have died but in fact are still living.  I am always happy to make this assessment of trees for you when I quote as I love to save trees wherever I can, always preferring to reduce than remove if my client is agreeable to this.

Tree of the year!

This year’s Tree of the Year award goes to a stunning 1,000 year old oak in Liverpool. The Woodland Trust has decided that Allerton Oak in Calderstones Park will now represent the UK in a European competition. One of the other entries in the competition was a local tree, a 200 year old sycamore growing on the wall of Colchester Castle.
Allerton Oak has an interesting history and in medieval times it is believed to have been the meeting place for the local court. A large crack down its side was supposedly created by the Lottie Sleigh, a ship carrying 11 tonnes of gunpowder which exploded while moored in the Mersey nearby in 1864.

During the second world war, leaves from the tree were sent with letters to local soldiers on the frontline to remind them of home.

Jay is leaving us.

So some sad news for our team this week as Jay our 2nd climber is leaving us at the end of the month to start a new life in Sussex. We have loved working with Jay over the last couple of years and wish him every success for the future. There is therefore a vacancy for a climber so if you are interested please contact Harry on 07756 811098

Dog Blog

As regular customers will know my rescue dog Shelby often comes out and about to work with me.
We always check before Shelby is permitted into a client’s garden and we understand if people do not want her to come out of the truck. However 99% of our clients are very happy to see Shelby and Shelby frequently makes new doggy friends with client’s dogs.
A quick google search will highlight the many studies that show the importance of pets as a support to mental health and a couple of our regular freelance climbers bring their dogs with them too which we are happy to support.
We often find that we have clients who adore dogs but for varying reasons are unable to have one of their own and it has been known to find Shelby on a client’s sofa being hand fed sausages watching tv with the client!
However please know that we totally appreciate that not everyone wants a dog in the garden and we always check before Shelby (or any other pooch) is released from the truck

Non native trees

Continuing from last week’s post about native trees I have again used the Woodland trust website to provided a definition of non native trees:
Any species that has been brought to the UK by humans is called non-native. This means that species would not naturally live here if it were not for us intentionally or accidentally bringing them here. About 8,000 years ago, Neolithic man first arrived in Britain and brought new species, such as plant crops and livestock, and a few stowaways like the house mouse.

There are many non-native species living in the UK. Some, like Douglas fir and Sitka spruce, are used in forestry; and others, such as copper beech and London plane, were brought here for their beauty.

Below is a link to non native trees, some of them may surprise you!

Defining native trees

In these blogs I often mention native trees and I thought it may be time to define this, which I have done below from the definition provided on the Woodland Trust website.
The term native is used for any species that has made its way to the UK naturally, not intentionally or accidentally introduced by humans. In terms of trees and plants, these are species that recolonised the land when the glaciers melted after the last ice age and before the UK was disconnected from mainland Europe.

During the ice age itself, areas of the UK were completely covered by a huge ice sheet. This prevented many trees and plants from growing and many species retreated south to survive the freeze. The ice sheets that covered large areas of the planet locked up lots of water from the Earth’s system. This made sea levels much lower than today and exposed a strip of land (now submerged beneath the Channel Sea) that connected the UK to mainland Europe.

As the Earth warmed and ice began to melt and retreat (over 10,000 years ago), species began to recolonise the once frozen land from the warmer south. However, trapped water released back into the system from the melting ice caused sea levels to rise again. Gradually the rising sea flooded the land bridge from the UK to Europe and prevented any more species (unless they could fly) from colonising the UK.

The link below will take you to a list of native trees, we are always happy to advise you on the best tree for your garden and the location you want it in.

Nesting Birds

At this time of year the birds are nesting in our hedgerows and in order to protect them and their young there are laws in place. Sadly there are some unscrupulous people in our industry who will ignore these laws and if you see this going on it should be reported. The RSPB recommends not cutting hedges and trees between March and August as this is the main breeding season for nesting birds.

https://www.rspb.org.uk

Chelsea flower show

So the 2019 Chelsea Flower show is on this week, and this year for the show Forestry England is working with garden designer Sarah Eberle to create The Resilience Garden – which celebrates the forests of the future. The garden will suggest potential solutions to protect the nation’s woods and forests against a changing climate, including the increasing threats of pests and diseases.
The Resilience Garden design is inspired by the revolutionary Victorian gardener William Robinson who introduced the notion of the ‘wild garden’ through his experimental planting.

 

Forest Bathing

The Japanese practice of Forest Bathing is becoming more popular in the UK as a way to de-stress. It is quite simply being calm and quiet among the trees, here are some tips to enjoy Forest Bathing:
What

  • Turn off your devices to give yourself the best chance of relaxing, being mindful and enjoying a sensory forest-based experience.

  • Slow down. Move through the forest slowly so you can see and feel more.

  • Take long breaths deep into the abdomen. Extending the exhalation of air to twice the length of the inhalation sends a message to the body that it can relax.

  • Stop, stand or sit, smell what’s around you, what can you smell?

The Forestry Commission

The Foresty Commission is changing its name! After 100 years of being the Forestry Commission it will now be called Forestry England:

Forestry England
As England’s largest land manager, Forestry England manages and cares for the nation’s 1,500 woods and forests with our 1,000 staff and the support of our 20,000 volunteers and 80,000 members.