Managing the woods
With the help from generous local supporters, Standish Woods were purchased by the National Trust in 1931. Over the decades, we've been working hard to manage the woods to ensure that it continues to thrive long into the future.
There are many reasons why we need to manage the woods. These include maintaining a variety of different habitats, stopping or preventing the spread of fungal diseases and helping to restore the native character of the woodland.
Woodland management plan
Earlier this year, we wrote a ten year Woodland Management Plan, which has been approved authorised by the Forestry Commission. The plan includes an operations plan of the work required to maintain or improve the health of the trees.
The trees in Standish Woods were growing too closely together, which isn't good for their development. Work has now been completed to remove some trees and allow the others to mature properly. Light is also now able to reach the woodland floor.
Some trees, including larch, have been removed to help prevent diseases.
With the felling works now completed, the areas that have been thinned the most have been restocked.
Over a thousand mixed broadleaf including beech, oak, field maple, wild cherry, whitebeam and hazel together with some holly and yew, have been planted to return it to a more typical Cotswold woodland.
The trees for the most part have been planted and then protected by biodegradable tree shelters which nurture the young trees helping them to better develop. The shelters prevent them being swamped by weeds such as bramble and prevent browsing by deer.
Over the next few years these young trees will appear above the shelters and as they grow will eventually form a joined canopy along with any naturally regenerating trees seeding in from the existing woodland.
" The branches left after felling are an important feature of the woodland ecosystem providing a deadwood habitat important for fungi, invertebrates and small mammals or reptiles to hunt or hide in. "
The felled areas will look less stark and will provide a beneficial contrast to the older woodland surrounding it, an area where we’re likely to see more insects and butterflies as well as nesting birds as the sun is able to reach the woodland floor.