So many people said you can’t grow trees here, so many times they said you can’t grow that tree, but the trees did.
There is still a general notion in Pembrokeshire that you can’t grow trees there. It is even used as an argument in planning regulations of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.
Yet, you will find trees growing all over Pembrokeshire, even right on the coast.
The list of trees you can grow in such an exposed area should be limited. After reading lots of books about the subject and looking at the landscape, certain tree came definitely on the list.
Others were a pure tryout. The above photo shows a Beech tree (Fagus sylvatica) with an old christmas tree. Both trees planted as a tryout.
The Beech was planted in 2003 but it did little to nothing. The X tree was planted in 2005 and suffered but started to grow after just one year.
In 2010 the Beech decided to follow and this photo is taken on 11 May 2012 showing both trees healthy and with lots of new growth. The top of the Beech is a bit weak and hangs down, perhaps it was a bit too greedy.
So many of the other trees proven them all wrong as well. This Apple tree was planted within a shelter facing south and still today provides lovely Apples.
By an old house, which once served as a small country pub, stand some very old Apple trees in the shelter of some Ash trees and Privet (Ligustrum vulgare).
The privets were not cut for a long time and became open trees, still providing enough shelter for the Apple trees.
Learning from the old the new was planted to grow the same way.
On the northern part of the globe it is handy to have the trees sheltered from north and east and facing south. On the southern part you best provide shelter from south, the heath and not the cold.
Make a kind of horse shoe shelter with shrubs and trees.
So started a new forest thinking which went well beyond the planting of some trees.
Maintaining 16 acres of land while involved with other Land Art projects and not to forget bringing up a child is a challenge.
Parts of the land had to defend for herself, with some surprising results.
Whenever you go to a blog or website about forestry, you will read about the ‘nasty’ Bramble. A very invasive plant by the looks of it. It literally walks over the land as new shoots grow up at first, then bend down and make new roots for the next step onto the land.
You can cut and pull as much as you want but they keep on going on. In the end just a path was kept free by bending the Brambles back.
One day while doing a routine check i came across a young tree pushing through the Brambles. The tree was never planted it came on its own and was grown over by the Bramble but this seems to help rather than hinder.
There are many trees and plants for that matter which can be called invasive no matter what their nationality is.
It is a discussion held on many levels in many places about native and nonnative.
An other blogger is giving lots of information about this discussion to prevent the cutting down of a wonderful forest in the name of nonnative tree forest must be replaced.
At times i looked at this issue but did as with all the rest went on and let the trees decide.
The native can live and do live happily next to the nonnative when you give them a change. It is my opinion that diversity is more important in a forest than the native only.
Perhaps the monoculture has created this issue more than we let on.
The Eucalyptus you see here come from that part of Australia which has a similar climate as Pembrokeshire. There are over 700 different Eucalyptus all having their own strength and way to grow. The Eucalyptus on the land are all small Mallee trees, there are even Eucals who don’t grow much bigger than 2 metres (7 feet).
This experience will not stop the discussion but the trees have changed my mind about the native nonnative issue.
All these lessons have taught me one thing look at the trees in the forests to learn and be surprised.
The trees of Land Art Forest will be many of many different kind benefitting the forest each in their own way. Some will be there for fruits and nuts others for their flowers and nectar and other for their amazing looks and some for their wood.
This forest you will see because of the trees as they will not be planted in lines of one variety. All forest are made by trees, Land Art Forest will be trees.