I began this blog to write about my experiments with perennial vegetables and polycultures. A lot of vegetable biomass and words have been generated over the past seven years on that topic and will no doubt continue well into the future. However there is news afoot and another topic to write about because the day before we went on our holiday to New Zealand my partner and I became the very proud owners of a woodland.
I call it (her) Hope Wood. She is in Shropshire in a quiet valley, surrounded by beautiful hills with an open aspect to the south. She is accessible from both of our bases – in Shrewsbury and our borderland home – making it easy to visit and also to stay over if we want to.
This is a dream I never expected to come to fruition and I am so excited about it! The opportunity came along and we took it eagerly without too much thought or forward planning, just instinctively knowing that this was something we would love to do. Accordingly there are no specific plans for how we will use the wood although it is likely to involve visiting as often as we can to spend time and get to know the place and the surrounding countryside rather than travelling further afield to visit other beauty spots. We will be sharing our joy with friends and family, and when the fine weather comes there will be gatherings and lots of cooking on an open fire. The wood is also very definitely for grandchildren to run about in. It is for them to get muddy and to briefly forget their ipads and phones, to climb trees and make dens and eat slightly singed food with relish.
The pictures below were taken on our first visit in October from one spot as I turned round and snapped what was in front of me. The final picture is looking over the open boundary when we visited just after Christmas. The wood was just on the snowline and looked and felt enchanting.
Hope Wood will be for dreaming in and dreaming of and I am now going to dream on!