Last year Ali spent a training day at The Harcourt Arboretum coppicing birch that is used to make the plant supports for the herbaceous border, see blog entry 26th February 'Coppicing Birch'.
|A Cleared Coppice Wood|
Today she returned with Callum and Danny to work with the team from the Oxford Botanical Gardens, coppicing enough birch and hazel for this year's plant supports. Coppicing is the repetitive cutting down of multi stemmed trees which then regrow from dormant buds from the stump that is left behind. Using sharp saws they made their way through a small birch wood cutting down young stems, processing them for use as supports and binding them up in groups of ten ready for transporting to Worcester and the Botanics. Once sufficient stems of birch had been cut they moved on to the hazel coppice. All the off cuts of wood from the processing were burnt in a controlled bonfire.