Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Butterdean Woods and Alba Trees Nursery

As a Woodland Trust campaigns volunteer, I was delighted to be invited along to a trip to Alba Trees Nursery and Butterdean Woods in East Lothian.

This morning we visited Alba Trees, which is a huge nursery that sources British seeds for native British trees and plants to be used by British clients such as the Woodland Trust. This is very important, given the fact that the recent (and continuing) outbreak of ash dieback disease can be attributed to imported trees. I was impressed also that the nursery seems to be cutting down as much as it can on its use of peat based growing mediums and recycles a lot of its planting containers. It's also an impressive nursery to look at. Those young trees in the photos below will grow up to become important parts of woodlands across Scotland.


I was delighted by the number of house martins flying about that seemed to be nesting around the nursery. 

In the afternoon, we travelled to the nearby Butterdean Woods and walked through this lovely area of mixed woodland, discussing management options and campaigns.


One small area has been made into a sort of memorial woodland for a local girl who died of leukemia, with some very pretty birdhouses hung up in the trees.



There are areas of potential danger in the woods, in the form of old mineshafts, which have become flooded. These have all been fenced off to prevent accidents, but seem to offer interesting habitats for wildlife.

For Nature Notes

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13 comments:

The Weaver of Grass said...

That tree nursery is so impressive Juliet and it lifts the heart to think of all those trees being planted.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

Love those birdhouses!!!!

Shona Shirley Macdonald said...

this is great to see :) It makes me think about possibly joining some woodland trust type organisations that are active here in Ireland. (I used to travel past the Butterdean Woods on the bus home!)

eileeninmd said...

Nice to see so many new trees to be planted. What a pretty place for a walk. The woods and the birdhouses are wonderful.

Dartford Warbler said...

I wonder how the world will have changed before those young trees are fully grown? How impressive to see so many trees being carefully nurtured.

The woodland walk must have been lovely.

dosankodebbie said...

What a lovely woodland memorial... and the birdhouses are adorable!!

Rabbits' Guy said...

All impressive! Thanks for the information ... keeps inspiration alive.

speedyrabbit said...

beautiful again Juliet

Kaye Brennan said...

Thanks for this Juliet and for taking the time to join us this week, we loved meeting you at last! What great photos! The Campaigns team don't get out as much as we would like so it was a really valuable visit to help us understand more about this nursery's important work - the grow trees for the Trust's community tree packs amongst other trees - and enjoy a lovely walk round one of East Lothian's beautiful woods with one of our Super Campaigners :)

Ms Sparrow said...

Ash trees seem to be in peril wherever you go! How sad that the balance of nature can be so easily upset by imported plants and insects.

Rambling Woods said...

I wish I had a native nursery near me.... So important... Michelle

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

What wonderful work they are doing.

Carol Steel said...

How hopeful to have a woodland nursery and to know these small trees will be planted. Your last photo intrigues me, green yet spooky and mysterious.