In the Annexe, we have had to strim away some of the red campion and other foliage from around the base of the four noble firs because their lower branches were getting overgrown. In some of our open areas, we do mow the grass regularly but elsewhere we tend just to cut paths through the vegetation to preserve access; otherwise we let the grass and wild flowers grow to encourage diversity. In a similar vein, we have also been creating a few more wood piles rather than burning all the tree trunks that we occasionally have to fell.
We have rerouted a path through the Larch Stand because specimen trees were beginning to impinge on the old route. Having dug out all the brambles and levelled the ground, here is a picture (right) of a group of volunteers using the log arch to lay a sizeable trunk to define the edge of the path. What do you mean it looks a bit "Last of the Summer Wine"?
Eric Dunell's volunteers have paid us a number of visits recently because one of their regular bookings elsewhere fell through and we are always pleased to benefit from their services. They have helped us with repairing steps in various pars of the Pinetum, using fallen giant redwood branches for new risers, reinstating the dead hedge along the river bank in the Entrance Area and removing fallen timber in the now largely dry stream bed.