Ivy – Knowing when to leave it, knowing when to intervene

Ivy (Hedera helix) is England’s only evergreen climber / liana and provides year round foliage and cover for a variety of wildlife. This is why, along with Holly, it is revered in folk lore for its capacity to remain green even in the very depths of winter. However, Ivy is not just for Christmas! It flowers late in the season, September, and being rich in pollen and nectar is a vital ‘fuelling up store’ for a wide range of overwintering invertebrates including Red Admiral, Tortoiseshell and Comma butterflies (shown here), numerous hoverfly and bee species. Ivy foliage is also a vital
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Trees and the ‘After-life’

Back in 2011 I had the opportunity to participate in Woodland Heritage’s ‘Woodland to Workshop’  3 day training course in Herefordshire. Amongst many pearls of wisdom and useful tips for developing UK based hardwood forestry management and utlization, Geraint Richards – Head forester for the Duchy of Cornwall – told us of an old mentor he once knew who said…”Foresters are like the clergy…. they both deal with the afterlife”. Whilst the ‘afterlife’ of concern to the forester is a more worldly one (i.e. trees growing into a future that extends beyond that of the one who planted them) the
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Adaptive Management and the Precautionary Principle

Just because we may want something to be a certain way does not necessarily make it so! Some people, for example, arguing that anthropogenic climate change is not a real possibility, given the weight of scientific evidence stacking up in support of this phenomenon, may beholden to a certain notion as to how they want the world to be, rather than actually how it is.  Nature does not function according to their rules apparently and therefore the “inconvenient truth” of increased CO2 levels in the earth’s atmosphere (through burning hundreds of millions of years’ accumulation of organic matter in the
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