Thursday, 6 August 2009

From Droitwich to Hampton Court Palace via Cardiff!

As a group of volunteers looking after Droitwich Community woods, we undertake many tasks from maintaining footpaths to coppicing, pollarding, tree planting and the dreaded removal of Himalayan balsam.

I was asked by my daughter-in-law who is a horticulturalist, if I could make a rustic log store with a living roof to be part of a show garden that she was helping to design and build for the Cardiff RHS garden show. The garden was called ‘Eating shoots and leaves, a permaculture garden’.

At the time we were felling semi-mature sweet chestnut trees to create a coppicing area. The large wood was allocated for fencing posts at County Hall, Worcester and the brash was being chipped for paths. I rescued some of the lesser sections that would have been chipped and used these to make the log store.

This was such a success (winning a silver medal) that I was asked if I could make a rustic fence for the ‘Anne Boleyn garden’ at the Hampton Court RHS show – the theme this year being Henry VIII’s wives. We re-coppiced some hazel stools that had not been touched for twenty years. I selected some straight lengths - ideal for the fencing that was to surround a scaffold where Anne Boleyn was beheaded. This garden attained a bronze medal.

Thanks go to Wychavon District Council, the woodland owners, and Roger Claxton the volunteer’s leader.

Peter and Roger, Droitwich Community Woods

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