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BARNARD CASTLE, BOROUGHBRIDGE & RICHMOND
Residential Management Team
For those marginal, wet and generally unproductive areas of the farm, planting up with cricket bat willows can provide a handsome income whilst maintaining the ecological and biodiversity value of the site.
Cricket bat willows grow well in wet low-lying areas prone to flooding or alongside the drainage ditches running parallel to more productive farmland. Planted at 10m intervals, the Yorkshire climate allows these trees to grow at a rate that produces the quality of timber that is highly sought after by the international cricket bat makers.
For the project to be financially viable, 50 – 100 trees need to be planted on an annual basis. The new trees are planted in 15ft lengths in tree guards to prevent deer damage. The cricket bat makers are only interested in the clean unstained wood of the trunk up to the first limb. Therefore, removing any new growth from the tree is vital to maximise the value of the timber. In this part of the country, the willow generally reach the required size of approximately 60” at chest height in 14 years, a quick return for timber. At this time they are harvested and replaced, providing an attractive annual income for the farm, assuming annual planting has taken place year on year since inception. In total, 30-40 acres are required across the farm to accommodate all the trees.
If you have areas of land you think could be suitable for cricket bat willows and would like more information on the process, please contact:
[team-member name=”Edward Staveley”]