Teagasc host farm walk in County Limerick as part of nationwide series

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Email:

donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

Teagasc host farm walk in County Limerick as part of nationwide series

There will be a Teagasc forest walk in Abbeyfeale this Thursday May 2

TEAGASC, in association with the Forest Service (DAFM), is organising a nationwide series of forest walks from April 29 to May 10 focusing on the management of young forests.

For many owners, the forestry conversation begins around opportunities for diversifying farm enterprises, grant and premia supports and the implications on the whole farm. It is essential to realise that the established forest is another crop and will reap rewards if managed as such. This year’s series of forestry management walks presents an opportunity to see forest management in action. Each walk will also allow informal discussion of issues on site but also management issues arising on attendees own sites. At these events, forestry experts from Teagasc and the Forest Service will explain why it is essential to care for young forests.

It is very important to ensure that a young forest will perform well and that forest owners know what needs to be done each year. This is also true if the management of the forest has been subcontracted out for the first four years. After all, it is the owner that will benefit financially from well looked after trees!

Payment of the second instalment of the Afforestation Scheme (4-year maintenance grant) and forestry premium is subject to the forest successfully achieving certain standards.

Emphasis in the first few years will be on controlling the surrounding vegetation, ensuring that browsing animals won't damage the young trees, replanting of failed trees, assessing nutrient needs, shaping of broadleaf trees and reducing the risk of fires.

The focus of these forest walks is on early management. However, medium to long term management will also be outlined along with the many supplementary grant measures now in place to support forest owners in optimising their farm forest resource.

This nationwide series of forest walks is aimed at landowners who have established a new forest in the last ten years. Landowners who are considering planting some land will also find these events very useful. No need to register - just turn up with appropriate footwear.

The meeting point for the County Limerick forest walk is the Golden Vale Mart car-park, Railway Road, Abbeyfeale at 7pm on Thursday, May 2. Contact Jonathan Spazzi at 087 7102739.