The Accidental Smallholder Forum

Smallholding => Land Management => Topic started by: peartreewoodlandsmallholding on April 02, 2014, 11:28:17 pm

Title: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: peartreewoodlandsmallholding on April 02, 2014, 11:28:17 pm
We been looking for a small plot of farm land for about 5 years and after going after 7 plots at auction and losing out on one 4acre plot we were buying and had rented for 12 months and spent thousands fencing etc only to be told owner didn't have a right to sell the field for legal reasons, we felt as though we,d never be able to own a small plot of land, Land prices around here as with most places have now hit astronomical prices, we went to last auction and a 4 acre plot of derelict unused in 5 years land that was half level and half steep sloping land went for 56,000  :o guide price was 15,000....... Long story short realising land prices are rising faster than I can save ive gone and got a foot on the ladder and bought 5 acres of beautifull woodland in a nice rural area 7 miles from home so local to me. But cant help but wonder if ive done the right thing, way I see it ive been unlucky over 5 years and have to be thankfull to have anything, I keep thinking what I can do smallholding wise with woodlands obviously I cant grow veg,s and keep most livestock, but can keep couple of pigs again and bee hives and chickens, plus have all the wood ill ever need for me log burner, but does anyone else have any better ideas on how to make the most from woodland with a smallholding mindset? thanks any advice from other woodland owners would be greatly appreciated....
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: waddy on April 03, 2014, 12:42:18 am
Hi Abe  :wave:
Look into forest gardening. You will be surprised just how much it may be possible to get out of your woodland; food (of the plant type as well as animal) as well as fuel. We have an area of woodland which has been unmanaged for years. At the moment we are clearing fallen trees (larch planted for telegraph poles). We have enough firewood to last a lifetime and timber for building projects. We will also eventually gradually replace many of the standing larch with British natives including nut and fruit trees, and coppiced hazel. We also intend to have areas in which we run pigs and an area to keep chickens (especially cockerels grown for meat as it will be away from the neighbours). We weren't originally looking for woodland (the property just happened to come with some) but it has been a huge and unexpected bonus and a joy to have. I was startled by a deer bursting from cover yesterday, the air is alive with birdsong and the bluebells are just about to burst into flower.


 :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
Helen
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: Clarebelle on April 03, 2014, 07:03:31 am
would goats also be suitable for keeping in an area of woodland? I know they will graze trees if they can, you might be able to get them to clear a small area of trees and vegetation so that you at least have a small place to use for other things.
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: SirDoolb on April 03, 2014, 03:32:44 pm
Hi. I'm in the other boat. I wanted a wood and ended up with a field.
I've been looking at trees that I can plant that will offer food and useful wood. I did make a long list of trees that I was interested in but can't put my hands on it right now.

Spend some time doing some research. It's amazing how useful some trees (well all trees) can be.

I do have a small tree covered area with a pond and there are ducks on the pond, so I'm sure this will be an option open to you as well.
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: benkt on April 03, 2014, 03:36:47 pm
We keep most of our chickens in runs in our little spinney. They seem to much prefer it down there with all the leaf litter to  scratch about in then being out in the exposed fenland fields.
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: Merrie Dancer on April 03, 2014, 05:27:10 pm
goats will debark the trees and kill them.
pigs, hens, turkeys, pheasants, guinea fowl etc would do well.
how about rearing pheasants in cages for the shooting season?
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: FiB on April 03, 2014, 05:59:41 pm
Oh for some woodland with a flat bit in it.... I'm a forest school leader and would love to be able to run sessions on my home turf....  Lots of scope with woodland - and often a piece of woodland is going for more than arable so you've done well
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: Merrie Dancer on April 04, 2014, 10:08:17 am
there was a programme on tv the other day about forest gardening. not sure if it was countryfile or landmark, or one of those.
is it a closed canopy? ie does the ground get sunlight?
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: shygirl on April 04, 2014, 10:46:36 pm
in my area the FC don't give 2 hoots aslong as you aren't signed in to a grant scheme and don't remove more than 5 cubic metres of trees per quarter yr without a license.
I worried when we first got our woodland so I got the forestry up to advise and they walked the land with me, very friendly and approachable. our 12 yr scheme had expired before we bought the place so there was no restriction on us at all.
try phoning the FC up for advice.
are you under a scheme?
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: FiB on April 09, 2014, 06:49:50 am
Hi, no theres no schemes or grants etc on our woodland. I had heard a lot of good things about the forestry commission and them offering some excellent advice. but im quite old fashioned and like to kinda stay under the radar, Dont really like to add attention to meself and me property by having authority types around. not sure if the F.C are like the council kinda thing once there alerted to you & your land and what you thinking of doing they keep a big brother eye on you from then on?. Maybe im just being paranoid, but there are far too many soft laws and rules and health and safety nonsense in this country, and the less I have to hear about it and am influenced by there nonsense the better ;) . Don't get me wrong I intend on looking after my woodland 100% and don't plan to compromise the quality and diversity of it ;) , I just want to use it and enjoy it not just look at it and enjoy if from a distance. going get all the brambles cleared first job try and encourage some better plants to take hold, and got loads of fallen trees to clear up and store the wood. plus lots of fencing around the perimeter need start saving again now..... Thanks for replys
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: FiB on April 09, 2014, 06:58:17 am
Better plants than brambles Ina woodland????   BLACKBERRIES!   ;D And they may well be occupying a space that not much else will grow in......  If you can bear to sit tight, the permaculutre foundationstone of observation through a full year will really help tell you what will work best re places to grow, which trees to coppice, which to remove for firewood/other purposes. You'll be lucky to get a FC bod out .... They are very stretched but you would be lucky to have one...   Might be worth joining the small woods association, lots of great help  courses and info there, also woodland trust. Also lots of help if you are willing to have a community aspect.
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: lilfeeb on April 09, 2014, 08:33:00 am
If you want to have many of the 4 legged farm animals such as pigs you will  need to register with your local Defra office/animal health before you can move any onto your land.
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: spandit on April 10, 2014, 09:50:17 am
As long as your woodland doesn't have a TPO then you can do pretty much what you want. A comment made to me on Arbtalk said that when planting new trees, you have to consider what the climate might be like in 70 years time. In my short life, we've lost most of the elm and the ash is under threat so new species are going to need to fill the gaps
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: shygirl on April 10, 2014, 10:43:06 am
i wouldnt worry too much, we worried about our woods but after 10 years no one has bothered us. except once when a forestry surveyor wanted to walk the land to count the trees but he left pretty sharpish. I wouldn't let him in as I had a herd of breeding pigs roaming loose and he had no means of disinfecting his boots or insurance for being mauled to death  :roflanim: :roflanim: :roflanim: :roflanim: :roflanim: he never came back to my knowledge.
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: AndynJ on April 15, 2014, 08:47:46 am
Pigs will clear an area, they will uproot most trees and they are not obliged to take notice of a TPO
Before long you could make an area to grow veg

Any wood that is over 8 feet long 3 inches in diameter and reasonably straight is worth hanging onto for building projects.

I'm told you are allowed to camp (touring caravan is classed as camping), in your own woodland, maximum 28 days a year and no more than 2 consecutive nights.  :thinking: who will be counting.

WELL DONE & GOOD LUCK
Title: Re: Finally bought some land but not sure i done right thing in woodland?
Post by: LeanneR88 on March 31, 2021, 01:58:46 pm
Hi, Do you still own your woodland? Would you mind me sending you a private message to ask some questions :)

Thanks


We been looking for a small plot of farm land for about 5 years and after going after 7 plots at auction and losing out on one 4acre plot we were buying and had rented for 12 months and spent thousands fencing etc only to be told owner didn't have a right to sell the field for legal reasons, we felt as though we,d never be able to own a small plot of land, Land prices around here as with most places have now hit astronomical prices, we went to last auction and a 4 acre plot of derelict unused in 5 years land that was half level and half steep sloping land went for 56,000  :o guide price was 15,000....... Long story short realising land prices are rising faster than I can save ive gone and got a foot on the ladder and bought 5 acres of beautifull woodland in a nice rural area 7 miles from home so local to me. But cant help but wonder if ive done the right thing, way I see it ive been unlucky over 5 years and have to be thankfull to have anything, I keep thinking what I can do smallholding wise with woodlands obviously I cant grow veg,s and keep most livestock, but can keep couple of pigs again and bee hives and chickens, plus have all the wood ill ever need for me log burner, but does anyone else have any better ideas on how to make the most from woodland with a smallholding mindset? thanks any advice from other woodland owners would be greatly appreciated....