Forgotten Forest Update

Our Arboriculturist Conrad Evans reports…

It has been a very busy summer and autumn! This year we have managed to find sponsors for all zones in the Val de la Mare Arboretum with the exception of the Conifer Zone; however we have a potential patron for the beginning of 2015. If any member is interested in sponsoring a zone, please get in touch! Many thanks to our generous current sponsors who are also members.

The trees in the collection will benefit from the goodwill of a local tree surgeon. This anonymous benefactor is giving his time free of charge, one day per month, in order to prune trees that are crowding out the exotic trees. This will mean the special trees will be able to fill out and grow into better specimens.

Another great milestone is the arrival of just over 150 tree labels for the arboretum. It has taken a couple of years and many visits by a number of tree experts to properly identify the trees. The tree labels also show planting dates, countries of origin etc. The collation of this information for other specimens is ongoing and more tree labels will be added in due course. Advice for interpreting the the tree labels can be found on this website. To date, the labels for the Australasian and American Zones have been produced as well as for some of the native and naturalised trees that are found growing in and around the zones. Popularity of the arboretum continues to increase and word of it’s existence has spread to France! Contact was made by a French agricultural study group from Mayenne asking for a conducted tour. In the event, 40 students and 4 teachers turned up on bicycles and enjoyed a brief tour of the zones.