Updated 11 Aug 2014

New Willows at Bear Mead

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New Willows at Bear Mead.

These 26 willows were planted on 28 September 2005, in honour of the great Ashes Series between England and Australia, 21 July-12 September. Perhaps the most exciting Ashes ever, England won 2-1 with 2 drawn, winning the Second Test by 2 runs.
*Michael Vaughan
James Anderson
Ian Bell
Paul Collingwood
Andrew Flintoff
Ashley Giles
Steve Harmison
Matthew Hoggard

+Geraint Jones
Simon Jones
Kevin Pietersen
Andrew Strauss
Marcus Trescothick
Chris Tremlett
Stuart Clark
*Ricky Ponting
+Adam Gilchrist
Michael Clarke
Jason Gillespie
Brad Haddin
Matthew Hayden
Brad Hodge
Justin Langer

Michael Kasprowicz
Simon Katich
Brett Lee
Stuart MacGill
Damien Martyn
Glenn McGrath
Shaun Tait
Shane Warne
The willows were taken as cuttings in December 2003 from the great trees growing about 300 yards to the North-East, on the South bank of the River Stour. Old maps show these trees once grew on an island in the river, and perhaps before that on the North bank as the Stour changed its course.

The cuttings were then potted up on trestles in the back patio of John and Rosie Palmer in Broadstone, over 2 winters and 2 summers, growing rapidly and becoming very thirsty before planting out where they are now seen.

On 24 May 2009 5 trees were so badly ring-barked by squirrels that they later died. On 10 Aug 2011 Robert Luther pollarded all remaining trees, which are growing well in summer 2012. On 4 Jun 2012 we cut down 2 central trees that had always been runts, leaving 19 healthy trees.

In pots 2004

X003d 22mar2004

Growing 2007-9

0253 29oct2007
0901 27may2008
1486 05mar2009

Stripped by squirrels 2009

1759 28may2009
1760 28may2009
1761 28may2009
1762 28may2009
1763 28may2009

Pollarded 2011

2939 16oct2011
2940 16oct2011

Growing 2012

3173. 2.5 metres high. 04jun2012
3174. 2.5 metres high. 04jun2012
3175. 2.5 metres high. 04jun2012
3176. 2.5 metres high. 04jun2012

Growing 2013

3471. 6 metres high. 07jun2013
3472. 6 metres high. 07jun2013
3473. 6 metres high. 07jun2013
3474. 6 metres high. 07jun2013

Growing 2014

3718. 10 metres high. 11aug2014
3719. 10 metres high. 11aug2014
3720. 10 metres high. 11aug2014
3721. 10 metres high. 11aug2014

    New Willow Diary


    02 Jul. Still no grass cut, 150,000 worth of equipment broke down, then rain came. We've had 50 mms rain in 3 days, the river is rising fast and might flood. Fitted notice by the line of 26 willows. Met Tony Long, butterfly man, from Corfe Mullen. Kestrel young leaving box, parent watching from dead tree. Hop has reached top of pole.
    02 May. Glyphosated around the 26 willows, which are now in full leaf and looking very fine.


    04 Nov. Another gorgeous day. Glyphosated all willows and ashes in perimeter. Cleared and glyphosated 6 patches along South fence where we will plant small ashes when they are ready. Slipped and fell while descending bank to river scale, so fitted a safety rope, we can now abseil down backwards! Rosie transferred topsoil from veg patch to another Munroe, hard work.
    03 Nov. Another beautiful day. We pruned and cleared the perimeter trees, I did 26 willows and 6 ashes, Rosie did 30 oaks, 4 chestnut, 3 ash and 1 aspen. Then I glyphosated the willows and ashes. Notes on glyphosating: Use 1 litre bottle of Roundup with 360g/l Glyphosate. Car will carry 4xwater containers=100 litres. Watering can is 10 litres and treats 7 trees. Concentration is 30 ml glyphosate in 10 litres water. Treating 32 trees took 20 minutes, so 1 carload=100 litres=10 watering cans=70 trees=10 rows of oaks. So all main oaks can be treated with 3 car loads and take about 1 hour.
    28 Jul. Finished hoeing 300 trees. 15 of 26 willows on East fence are over 2 metres high. Oak K3 still looks sick, may replace in November.
    23 Jul. Hoed 130 trees, all growing well, willows on East fence especially.
    28 Mar. Willows and 2 of the 4 conker trees are just coming into leaf.


    24 Dec. A tree count revealed 300 trees within the deer fence: 262 oaks, 29 willows, 7 ashes, 2 horse chestnut. All the oaks are children of the Major Oak in Sherwood Forest
    28 Sep. Saw a barn owl sitting in our empty kestrel box. Finished planting 26 willows (from 10 ltre pots) along the East deer fence. They are in honour of England defeating Australia in the Ashes cricket series, probably the most exciting ever. Each willow is named after a player in one of the teams, and bears a label with his details.
    24 Jul. Planted 3 willows (from 10 litre pots) at side of pond, christened them "Faith, Hope and Charity".
    09 Apr. Frost last night which killed off many tender new leaves starting to sprout on willows and oaks
    11 Mar. Planted 14 willows from 5" pots inside deer fence at East end.



    21 Dec. Collected 200 shoots from old white willows growing on a merged island, put into pots, hope they will root and we can transplant to East spoil bank along main ditch.

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