Since my last report we have had two very successful Stara Bee’s – its amazing how fine weather can make things go so well!!!

Piers’ Working Party Report June 2023For the first mid-month, midweek bee we undid the temporary diversion we put in place last autumn when an ash tree fell across the riverside path in Broad Wood. Our friends at Happy Habitats had already done the heavy work in cutting the tree up into manageable chunks, but having diverted the path we were waiting for some finer weather to clear away the barriers and the large chunks of tree. The path now is back as before and is worth a visit – the 6 months of dormancy and then this remarkable late spring means there is an abundance of young trees fighting for the light opened by the fallen ash.

We also put in a couple of new drains which will hopefully keep the paths drier when the rain returns – we will see!

Our normal, first Saturday of the month bee for June was also a very productive session. The regular Stara visitors among you will notice a new deadwood fence across one of the bigger cuts that go down to the river near the car park. This is not us just being grumpy, it is really important we protect the river bank and these cuts are opening the paths up to undercutting and possible flooding – sorry, but to enjoy the woods into the future we really do need to keep both people and dogs out of the river.

Further into the woods we’ve started to clear the paths. You’ll remember every year we spend several Bees clearing bracken and brambles that grow over the paths and this spring after the cold April and early May, once the sun arrived everything has been rushing to catch up, and the paths are disappearing under new growth. This month we’ve cleared the path along from the caravan into Treovis Wood and those across the new plantation above the workshop. It’s a good time to use these paths – before the bracken grows too high and hides all the young trees that are looking great right now.

Speaking of young trees, some self-seeded pines are growing amongst the young trees that have been planted in Broad Wood and are now nearly 20 years old (see Anne’s piece in the June Link). These fir trees grow really fast and again we are trying to control the battle for light so to help the trees we want in the future woods we are cutting out the firs. It looks a bit messy initially but it will soon recover and the 100 year plan is one step closer!. 2 more bees for you to join in July – the 1stand the 19th. On the 1st we meet at 10am as usual, on the 19th it will be 6pm. Work footwear, gloves and refreshment as always – see you there!