All posts by Briony Davies

Planting trees

Temple to Nature®

ELF for tree planting

1) When the bucket needs changing dig a similar sized hole where yo intend to plant a tree during autumn and winter. 

2) First take a spade sized turf off using the bucket as a pattern.

3) Have a tall marker ready to mark the spot and empty the bucket contents into the hole.

4) Put some soil on top and then the turf , upside down with the rest of the soil piled on top until planting time.

5) Plant a happy tree and watch it flourish!



Death, and death of Our Planet

The scenery is as “Turneresque” as it ever was in the Welsh Marches at dawn; the mist is lingering around the gently curving hills and valleys; hovering over the rivers; rising off the reservoir surface as though a great beast was waking in the dark water. Imagine if the gasses from the effluent we and our animals create is contaminating this beauty.

The idea that we should add to this the contamination from a new crematorium is an abomination. There is an alternative to this polluting and carbon wasteful method that should be seriously considered: pyrolizing. Not only human cadavas can be disposed of this way but also fallen stock and organic based trimmings etc.

Pyrolizing is a way of capturing any contaminants but especially all the carbon so that it can be put back in the ground indefinately. Taid [grandfather] put back in the fields should be an appealing proposition. The bonus is that  the gas that can be collected from this process can be utilized for other uses. It will need an act of parliment to do this. But, could Wales take a lead in this matter?

The fact is that there is already major air pollution from the vast number of intensive farm units, mainly poultry, that have proliferated in the area.

The mist moving slowly through the trees is full of invisible pollutants, mainly from these intensive farm units, and is depositing them on the trees which  then absorb the contaminants through their leaves and needles, the rest ending up on the ground where they overdose the delicate world of fauna that supports the tree via its roots. The contamination is killing the trees and the entire ecological support system. There will be a grave possibility of forest fires in the future. WHY add another polluting factor to the air that we breath?


Tread Lightly

Tread lightly on your planet: but how?
Met Office :“ . . . global sea level has risen by about 20 cm, primarily as a result of ocean warming and melting of land based ice”.

There is nothing romantic about the vital soil under our feet but we need to look after it as best we can. The above extract about the climate hides the fact that more heat means more rain and more rain means the nutrients in the soil will be leached out; it means that plants will try to adapt but the question is: can they adapt at an unprecedented speed?

Do we begin to teach this generation about the struggle and the effort needed to help the natural world adapt to our mistakes? Rain has dramatic effects on soil; bare soil, between crops, the nutrients are washed into the streams and then to the sea; the bright green seaweed around our coasts are evidence of this.

The run- off can be slowed down by use of hedges and more buffer zones of trees or even beavers; though their welcome is questionable. Increasingly technology is being applied in farming meaning not only more efficient use of additives but importantly less heavy machinery. Children need to understand these facts.

Natural systems need to be nurtured by this generation. We are at the top of the food chain and the health of the wild elements is an indicator of our health. If the insects go, so do we.

All primary children should be enabled to experience “soil”. Learning what worms and moles and fungi do and what different plants extract or improve it for the benefit of cereals and root vegetables is basic science.

An example of an improvement on traditional methods was in the news this week, the farmer covered his cattle manure, which produces gasses as it is broken down by microbes, with a sheet and then turned it over to increase the oxygen to then complete the process under cover again. The result was a 50% increase in the quality of the composted manure.

Keeping chickens is the easiest way to teach children about natural processes like this. The straw needs to be chemical free; the mix of straw and droppings needs to be stacked for six months before use because it becomes a very powerful fertiliser. Outdoor lessons can be conducted, learning by experimenting rather than entirely theoretically and they may even stumble across new facts.


Today 20 September 2017 the first Fieldfare has been seen in North Wales.

Migrating thrushes need food as they travel South across Britain for the winter.

The plants they rely on are berries, hips and haws. The most useful are Rowan; Hawthorn that has not been hacked off by the contractors; Holly which needs male and female plants to produce flowers and then berries; Berberis if it has been allowed to grow and Roses especially: Dog rose in hedges; Rugosa especially ‘Hansa’ and Moyesii which is a very easy shrub about 5′ h.