Woodland at Mount Stewart estate

Mount Stewart woodland on an early winter morning © National Trust / Mount Stewart

Mount Stewart woodland on an early winter morning

Mount Stewart estate is comprised mainly of woodland areas, most originating from plantation woodland. Scattered areas of semi-natural broadleaf woodland have established themselves throughout the estate. Discover more about our trees and their origins.

Coniferous woodland supports the wildlife

Areas of coniferous woodland are mostly located in the north-west part of the estate. These large blocks of conifers are leased to forest service and include:

  • Fort Hill
  • Lowry's Screen
  • Dalzell's Hill
  • Cattle Knowes
  • Old Hill
  • Castlereagh Oak Wood
  • Moat Hill
  • The Glen
  • Patterson's Hill

For the most part, these areas are shrub and herb poor, and of limited biological interest. However, they're important in terms of the continuity of wooded areas in the overall landscape. Thus, they're locally significant for species such as the red squirrel and the cloaked pug moth.

Broadleaf plantation origins and species

The remainder of the woodland blocks are mainly composed of broadleaf plantation and are managed by the Trust. The broadleaf plantation is of varying age, the older part originating from planting during the 18th and 19th century.

These woodlands are dominated by beech and - due to dense shading within - have retained a plantation character. Where beech is less dominant, the woodland has developed a shrub layer of mostly ash and sycamore. To a lesser extent, elder and holly are also present.

The more recent broadleaf plantations contain a variety of species with oak and ash as significant constituents.