Trees not so good

Allison visited her daughter and grandson yesterday, and came back with a ute-load of advanced trees, donated by a friend of the family. We have some work to do.Here’s a report on our tree-planting efforts so far.

Within our house paddock, our orchard and our free-standing trees are doing pretty well. The current very dry period is doing some serious damage, and we shall lose some plants, but overall we’ll be OK.

We perhaps haven’t paid enough attention to keeping the trees going. We took steps to make the watering work, but for a number of reasons it hasn’t always been timely or effective. In very dry weather, there is little room for error.

Outside the house paddock, the results are more mixed. I think we’ve lost about half the trees we planted this year. That’s not unusual, but we were hoping for better.

We used tall wooden stakes and extra-long tree protection tubes. Unfortunately, with the very hot weather the plastic slumped and slipped to the bottom of the stakes. Perhaps we could tie the plastic up next time.

Our pine trees near the highway have had mixed results. Shayne put a temporary fence around the best ones, and they are doing OK.

We had sheep in the paddocks, not part of the original plan. Mainly this was so that we could get the grass down, so as to deal with the serrated tussocks. It was also a swap between agistment and some fencing, on which work is continuing.

We still have plenty of tussocks, alas. Hopefully we’ll get on top of them before next summer.

For the next lot of trees, I have bought some stiff treeguards, alas not so high. I think these will work, but probably not with the sheep. Next year, we will make more use of temporary fencing and electric fencing, to protect our plantings.

 This weekend we said goodbye to our wwoofers Sandrine, Markus and Anna. And hello to Sarah and Lasse from Denmark. We had a medieval feast at home, something now becoming a tradition, and we invited some friends. They all had a great time. 

They left us some cute photos to post, but we’re at the end of the month so I’ll leave them a few days.

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