Tuesday, 28 January 2020 00:00

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden Winter Coppicing Campaign

Written by  Paul Dickson
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Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden Winter Coppicing Campaign

The gardening team and volunteers at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, are working on their annual winter hazel coppicing campaign. Every year they coppice a section of hazel on rotation, using a battery operated chainsaw to minimise the noise.

This ancient woodland management practice involves cutting young stems down to a stump. The tree then regrows and is cut again on a seven year cycle. All the young stems are used. They are sold in plant sales as pea sticks and bean poles and they are also being bundled up into faggots, which will build up the paths on sections of the Broads and Ranworth Walks.

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Coppicing improves the biodiversity of the garden by preventing over-shading from the tree canopy. It is great for plants like bluebells, wood anemones and marsh marigolds. After a few years, brambles and climbing plants like honeysuckle start to grow - a very good food source for birds and mammals.

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is at South Walsham NR13 6DZ. The garden is open every day during the winter, 10am to 4pm. There is a tearoom, gift shop and plant sales area.

T. 01603 270449, www.fairhavengarden.co.uk

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    Andy Usher explained: “I have volunteered in the garden for the last six years. I am chainsaw qualified, bought a carving saw and began experimenting with creating animals. This led to my idea to carve the bears out of Fairhaven wood and give families a fun activity. All the bears are next to well-known trees and the idea is for children to discover some of the species that make up the woodland garden, as well as enjoy hunting the bears.”

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    Louise Rout, General Manager, Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden said: “We are thrilled to be in Garden News Magazine's Best 100 Gardens again and would like to thank everyone who voted and helped us achieve third place in the Midlands. Our gardening team work so hard to care for the garden and the Best 100 Gardens poll is a wonderful endorsement of their work.“

    The garden is open daily from 10am to 5pm . Free entry to tearoom (opens 9.15am), gift shop and plant sales.

    There is wheelchair access throughout the garden, including a Sensory Garden and an accessible boat for trips on the broad from April to October (additional charge).

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    All the activities are included in the garden entry charge, which is £6.85 for adults, £6.60 for concessions, £3.95 for children (5-16) and under 5 free.

    Volunteer Andy Usher has carved 10 bears from Fairhaven wood to create the Great Bear Hunt. The bears are located throughout the garden next to trees and shrubs. It's a fun way to learn about the woodland and get out and about in the garden.

    Andy has also created a special summer Teddy Bears' Picnic area and a Bear Swing. Children can borrow one of our teddy bears at visitor reception, or bring their own and enjoy some quality bear time.

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