Transition Ireland and Northern Ireland

the network for communities building local resilience

Close to Nature Forestry


Close to Nature Forestry

Are you interested in close to nature forest management to create continuous cover forestry? Learn/share ideas/practical management skills to create permanent, ecologically & economically sustainable forests. Feel free to share ideas/questions

Location: All Ireland
Members: 29
Latest Activity: Jul 16, 2012

Discussion Forum

Irish Green Forest policy July 2012

Started by Cathy Fitzgerald Jul 16, 2012. 0 Replies

Silviculture- a definition

Started by Christopher Hayes Jul 8, 2009. 0 Replies

Jan Alexander's 'local forest log' blog

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Comment by Bernard Joyce on February 11, 2010 at 18:17
Hi Richard - I have availed of the Native Woodland Scheme to establish a New Native Woodland and regenerate an old woodland. We were on of the first sites in the country under the NWS. Conservation and Biodivirsity are the main aims of the NWS so it is pretty eco. We are a few years in and are certainly reaping those benefits. Part of the site is alongside the N5 road to the west so feel free to come and have a look
Comment by Christopher Hayes on January 30, 2010 at 6:18
Hi Richard,
The scheme run by the gov is fairly straightforward and it will cover nearly all the cost of establishing a new woodland. There is some scope for creativity and it is a good idea to engage with the local forest inspector as you are drawing up the plan. The bottom line is that the scheme will enable you to establish a new woodland- broadleaf or conifer- and that is a big positive!There is an amount of paperwork that a registered forester will have to complete to submit an application. Email me and I can call you and answer any particular questions.
Comment by Cathy Fitzgerald on January 29, 2010 at 9:57
Hi Richard,
I don't know anything personally about the afforestation scheme, our woodland was planted long ago but an e.g of ecological forestry, based on european close to nature permanent forestry methods is Pro Silva - see There are a growing number of large commercial site changing to this style of forestry. There is an upcoming open forest day organised by Pro Silva Ireland, with visiting leading guest Pro Silva foresters, in Wicklow in April. I will post to this group when I have full details.

Comment by Richard Auler on January 28, 2010 at 22:05
Has anyone here any experience with the Government's Afforestation Scheme or do you know of an eco-friendly example in Ireland..............
Anything appreciated.
Thanks in advance,
Comment by Richard Stone on January 14, 2010 at 18:40
Hi Gavin,
Thanks for the info. I am about to plant some alder in an area we are clearing of Sitka spruce. The spruce are windblown and need clearing up. They were planted on cutover bog so no wonder thet fell over. The advice from Pro Silva is to plant alder in this situation. Some birch and willow are already moving in on the edges. It will be a nice area in years to come.
All best, Richard
Comment by Gavin Lynch on January 14, 2010 at 14:16
Richard, alder is not as good as ash etc in terms of calorific value but for wet ground it's ideal. Also nitrogen fixing and fast growing! This link should answer your questions

Regards, Gavin Lynch
Comment by Richard Stone on January 14, 2010 at 13:56
I have been told that Alder is not a great fuel wood. Does anyone know more about this?
Comment by Cathy Fitzgerald on January 13, 2010 at 21:19
Hi Tracey, if you start a discussion on this topic above you should get some comments from the group; I have alder growing happily on wet clay ground but we don't coppice it as its pretty old. My forester is a close to nature forester, Chris Hayes, he's part of this group and you can contact him at, he'll know as one of his good friends is very much into coppicing
Comment by Tracey Jean Yappa on January 13, 2010 at 20:42
can anyone offer advice on planting a wet area for future fuel ,I am thinking of planting Alder or willow, which would be best, which coppices best, how long till first cut ,planting distances ,species suggestions, I would like to plant this dormant season where can I find information ? would be grateful for any info
Comment by Lyn Mather on September 8, 2009 at 9:45
Below is press release by - working in restoring people's relationship to trees and promoting native woodlands. If we want to promote community participation in local forestry and our woods as national heritage, then this is really alarming.

Press Release
Where’s my tree?

Amidst the general ballyhoo surrounding the new Millennium, Coillte, the semi state body set up in 1989 to look after the nation' s forests,announced the setting up of the grandiosely titled,"People's Millenium Forests"
Over 1.2 million households in Ireland, were sent a certificate, telling them the particular type of native Irish tree, (the seed gathered, we were told by Irish schoolchildren), being planted in their name, and its location, in one of 16 different chosen woodlands. The certificate alleged ownership "in perpetuity" to each person.
Less than two months ago, buried in the bowels of the McCarthy report, is a recommendation that Coillte be sold - lock stock and smoking barrel - to gain a few bob for the desperadoes in government.
This went virtually unnoticed and unreported on amidst the general meltdown, long predicted by anyone with more than two brain cells of the Irish "economy".
If Coillte is sold off this means a Russian oligarch, a Chinese resource hunter or an American pulp paper company, could own one and a half million acres of Irish forests, including mountains, lakes, rivers and some of the Europe's very last raised bogs. The hunting and fishing licenses that Coillte obtained from the old Land Commission estates will be sold as well, and all of these 1.2 million trees, so generously gifted, for ever and ever, to each and all of us.
What's going on?
Please help stop this latest fire sale of Ireland's environmental treasures and join the Where's My Tree Campaign?
Take action!
Contact Coillte by email at and ask them where your tree is?
and when can you go visit it?
Contact your local elected representatives on this issue as well.
Go see for more background info.
The potential buyers, who ever they may be are probably slavering at the thought of getting their hands on some of Ireland's most beautiful wild and ecologically fragile lands, but if you're there with your certificate and your tree - what can they do.
Coillte, and its paymaster the Minister for Finance, can't send us all the log factory. Can they?
Where's My Tree?
Write today and support the vision for genuine community native woodlands and a new forestry policy with the emphasis our native trees, for all of the known benefits.
To send us your message of support and any results and pictures of your tree hunt email

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