With the hill more or less dead and lifeless, now seems to be the time to make plans for the spring. Although it doesn’t seem it, the growing season is almost here, and I’ve got big plans for planting.
One of the most important projects I’m working on this year is creating (or resurrecting in some cases) hedgerows around the low ground. With the exception of two mature conifer plantations, there are almost no trees in the inbye fields, and given that black grouse really dine out on hedge berries, it seems logical to create some ungrazed field margins and fill them with low growing berry trees like hawthorn and rowan. It will do no harm to the open heather habitat on the hill and it will add another dimension to the feeding already available on the low ground.
As always, my budget is very limited for projects like these but in the next few weeks, I will be ripping out a one hundred yard section of rotten fence and re-stock proofing it as a double enclosure. It will be a few years before the first berries appear, but it’s nice to have a few irons in the fire at the same time so that they come to (literal) fruition over an extended period.