Now there are 3

As a quick update on some of what we had planned for June, you can view what we got up to on our trip to the beach here;
We hope to see some of the Gower staff again when we re-plant at Pont-ar-Daf this winter…

July has been a return to hard graft and a great introduction to our work for Peter the new woodland volunteer. Peter is staying with us whilst he builds up his woodland experience to help get a job in the sector.

With some better weather we have had time to focus on the care of the newer plantings around the Tarell Valley. A bit of extra fencing to make sure that the areas are stock proof – our young trees seem to be the favourite grazing for sheep. Next up comes the weeding, with a careful eye, we strim out all the bracken between the trees. The trouble with the bracken, is that it shades out the young, small trees in the summer and then come the autumn it collapses and squashes them. A quick spot spray will hopefully help the trees get away this summer.

Young trees after a little care and attention.

Proof of it getting nicer, we now have bees in residence at the back of our yard, hoping to make the most of the heather on the hill above us.

Busy bees

We have also managed to get Peter stuck right into some forestry work with the creation of a new track in Pont-ar-Daf.  He has been felling, winching, cross-cutting and extracting timber.  The new track will help us get around the woodland so that we can manage it.  We have also created a new loading area for the timber lorries so they no longer have to load near the busy entrance onto the hill that is the main access point to Pen-y-Fan. 

Whilst the digger was on site, we also sent it along the bottom edge of the wood.  Here it has been preparing the ground for a new permissive path between Pont-ar-Daf and Storey Arms that is off the roadside.  There is a full gallery of pictures on our facebook page.

Track building, full steam ahead.

Now we are wishing for a lovely sunny August.  Not just for your holidays, but with some good weather, we should finish or fencing plans for the TarellValley.  This has been a project of our over the last few years to exclude stock from the wooded areas to help new growth and the under storey to flourish.

And if there are a few not so pleasant days, that should be enough for us to finally fill the last of the log sheds for this winter.


Time to get out there,
The Woods team.


It’s hotting up

As you may have read last time, we were just embarking on fencing some of the dingles, the little wooded valleys, on our farms in the Tarell Valley.  In this time we have had some good wildlife sightings, incuding kingfishers on the river, lizards in old walls, frogs under rocks and this moth.  Although it may not be an amazing rare find, it was still impressive .  This night flyer was brushed from its perch as we fenced and spent the rest of the day on the tractor.

As part of our fencing work we have been replacing some of the stiles on the Tarell Valley walk with kissing gates.  Our most recent batch of gates has been made by Year 9 pupils from Ysgol Maesydderwen in Ystradgynlais.  The students built them as part of an industry day to experience the activities of a countryside warden.

August is now looking busy for the woodlands team as we pack-up and move to the Gower to help the property team down there prepare for the building of the new Lodge at Cwm Ivy.  We’ll be taking our specialist machinery to help deal with the handling of large trees.  Hopefully we’ll get you some pictures, but for now, here is the Gower blog page with more on the Lodge.

And finally, to top it all off, we are making preparations to our Garden Take-away that will be appearing at this years Green Man Festival in the Brecon Beacons.  The festival is from the 18th-22nd August.  It’s all sold –out now, but if you managed to get tickets, come say hello and find out just what it is that we are serving up.

The woodland team.