“Mighty oaks from little acorns grow”

At least that’s what we’re hoping will happen as a result of Saturday’s workshop — when a group of 12 volunteers met outside Heggs cow byre to get hands-on with nature restoration. 

Volunteers enjoying the sunspot in front of Heggs Farm cow byre

Led by Carol Douglas from the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust, as part of the Growing Trees Together initiative, the aim of the workshop was to make our own germination boxes, that would then safely protect and nurture a variety of local tree seed, collected the previous week from the ancient Ivelet Woods in Gunnerside. 

Volunteers constructing the sides of the germination box from soft wood

Working in pairs, there was plenty of time to knock up a simple box with mesh-covered lid (crucial to keep small mammals out). And some more handy than others, even managed two! 

Volunteers making use of spare furniture to saw pieces for the box’s lid

Delicious home cooked soup, accompanied by breads and cakes from Reeth’s Two Dales Bakery, rounded off the morning nicely. Oh, and did we mention the sun shone throughout?!

The finished article.

We’re now eager to see which seeds germinate successfully (we chose Holly for our own) and hope that this is just the first small step towards creating a thriving tree nursery right here in Swaledale.


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