Category Archives: Woodland

Ash Tree Concern

In Hinton St Mary we are surrounded by Ash Tree’s and I thought that I should alert everyone to the current damage being caused from the importation of Foreign Tree species.

Chalara fraxinea (C. fraxinea) has caused widespread damage to ash tree populations in continental Europe, especially common ash (Fraxinus excelsior), including its ‘Pendula’ ornamental variety. Fraxinus angustifolia is also susceptible. Chalara dieback of ash is particularly destructive of young ash plants, killing them within one growing season of symptoms becoming visible. Older trees can survive initial attacks, but tend to succumb eventually after several seasons of infection.

It was unknown in Great Britain until recently, but the first cases were confirmed in a nursery in Buckinghamshire early in 2012, on ash plants which had been imported from The Netherlands. Since then, more infected plants have been confirmed in nurseries in West and South Yorkshire, Surrey, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire, and in recent plantings of young ash trees at four sites: a car park landscaping project in Leicester, a Forestry Commission Scotland woodland near Kilmacolm, west of Glasgow, a college campus in South Yorkshire, and a property in County Durham. Our colleagues in Fera are working to trace forward plants which had already been sold on to retail customers from the infected nursery consignments.

The Forestry Commission is treating C. fraxinea as a ‘quarantine’ plant pathogen, which means that we may use emergency powers to contain or eradicate it when it is found. This is being done in the form of Statutory Plant Health Notices which we serve on affected owners requiring them to remove and destroy affected plants by burning or deep burial on site. Equivalent measures are being taken on land managed by the Forestry Commission. This is the only available treatment.

Please be vigilant if you see any signs of the disease and rationally refrain from planting species from overseas at this stage.

I visited the Orchard within the Community Garden and was saddened to see that we have hardly any apples this year.It’s believed that the cold weather caused the hibernation of bee’s at a crucial time and very little fertilisation took place.

This highlights the continued need to support our bee and insect population. They do huge amounts of work for us at no cost so reward them by growing good forage, letting your lawns grow longer, leaving piles of wood/grass cuttings around throughout the year.

By the way the Community Garden needs more support from all of us not just the existing small band of hard workers.

Vince Adams


North Dorset Draft Housing Strategy 2012-2015

The Council’s Housing Strategy 2012 – 2015 is now available for consultation and we are keen to incorporate the views of all of our partners and stakeholders in the final document which will be published in April 2012. We are particularly interested in your comments on the proposed strategic priorities which are set out on page 13 and are as follows:

Increasing the number of homes available to buy and rent, including affordable housing;

Protecting the vulnerable and disadvantaged by tackling homelessness and supporting people to stay in their own homes;

Making sure that homes are of high quality and sustainable.

Do you agree that these should be the Council’s priorities for housing over the next three years?

Do you agree that by taking effective action in these areas we will have a positive impact on the issues set out underneath each of these priorities?

Are there other actions the Council should be taking on housing issues in the District?

Please let us have your comments on the document by Friday 16 March 2012. In the meantime, if you would like to discuss any aspect of the draft Strategy or require hard copies or a different format please contact Derek Hardy at North Dorset District Council on 01258 484041,

The Housing Strategy is here (opens in new tab/window)

The Natural Path

SUNDAY 27TH NOVEMBER, Planting Day at Orchard Farmhouse

Tree Planting Day

There will be tree planting, moving seedlings etc.  Fencing will have been put up so the hardest work has been done.  Meet 10 am at Orchard Farmhouse.  Potato and soup for lunch.  Cakes for tea.  Come morning or afternoon.  Bring a spade.  Please contact Rupert to let him know you are coming by phone or email.

01258 817980
Orchard Farmhouse, Wonston, Hazelbury Bryan, Dorset, DT10 2EE

Woodland Trust – Look out for sloes and rosehips

TTSN Mini Event Thursday 21st July at 6.30 pm followed by glow worm walk


Lucie Cowles a well known local expert in foraging, woodlands and the environment generally has kindly agreed to organise a forage in and around Gold Hill Organics in Child Okeford.

The walk will start after weeding which is held every Thursday on the Farm at just after 6.30pm. Everyone is welcome to joing the Weeding Party which starts at 5.00pm or just come along to the Forage.

We plan to cook and eat anything we find and its possible that the Cake Tin might stay open to serve drinks etc to have with the food.

There is just so much in and around our gardens, woodlands, footpaths that is good to eat and free for everyone.

Lucie’s web address is

Glow worms

If anyone feels energetic later, it’s also a great time of year to spot Hambledon Hill glow worms. As darkness falls the females give their display on the stalks of grass tufts in the hollow above the inner rampart of the northwest quarter. Just remember it’s all too easy to come down the hill in the dark much quicker than you planned!
DCC Member Blackmore Vale

Try and make a date,

Best Wishes,    vince

Woodland Management and Trees for Transition Courses

Hello All

I am teaching some courses this year at Kingcombe Centre in Dorset and the Green Wood Centre in Shropshire.

Kingcombe Centre:
25th to 26th April – Woodland Management
We will consider British woodland in an historical and contemporary context and show how through effective management it can play a central role in the countryside of the future. Includes visits to ancient woods and other sites.

The Green Wood Centre
7th to 8th May – Woodland Management
We will consider British woodland in an historical and contemporary context and show how through effective management it can play a central role in the countryside of the future. Includes visits to ancient woods and other sites.

3rd to 4th September – Trees for Transition
Focusing on how trees are incredibly useful for fuel, building materials, food, agro-forestry, shelter, carbon management, health & wellbeing and community initiatives, we will explore the important role trees and woods can play in the transition to a sustainable low-carbon future.

Do sign up, or pass this on to someone who might be interested.

See my website for a flavour of the courses:


Robin Walter, Chartered Forester

10 St. James Street, Shaftesbury, Dorset SP7 8HA
01747 850978, 07824 552414