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David Bothwell's Diary 2021/22

Kevin O’Connell, Forestry Development in Teagasc, was talking one of your fellow forestry group members, David Bothwell.


He has woodland approximately fifteen years old of Norway spruce, Ash and mixed broadleaves.  Like Kevin, he has to work from home these days.  The wood is right beside his house, so he goes out for walks during the day to clear the head.  The Norway spruce will probably not be ready for thinning for another two years or so, but David has already started preparing by cutting brash paths.  He does this in the evenings and on some Saturdays.


Below is an e-mail, including photographs, Kevin kindly received from David to share with you:



In the three small fields, they planted some rows of Alder in the middle of the Norway, so I started my inspection path by brashing the Alder by hand.  (Image shown on the left.)


I then continued into the Norway with a small chainsaw.  It takes an average of two and a half minutes to clean each tree.  (Image shown on the right.)

This can result in a lot of brash to clear from under my feet, but it is necessary to make access easy and safe.  It also allows me to see if I have got all the lower branches.  (Image shown to the left).


I can now see what is happening in the middle of the forest (image shown to the right) and have found a lot of Sally in the trains.  

I also reverse the tractor with the transport box on, round the edges of the forest to maintain access.


In the larger 10 acre field, they left one row unplanted in the middle as an access path.  I am bashing the trees on either side, so it will also act as an inspection path (image shown to the right) but I still have a lot of work to do here.

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