The planting of 20,000 hedging plants and trees has just been completed, adding a further 10 miles of hedgerow in Jersey, in the eastern parishes from Trinity through St Martin to Grouville. The work has continued from the areas reached in 2019 in order to restore the landscape and provide habitat in the form of native hedging species. Benefits to the environment, agriculture and the human population are numerous. The legacy of the planting afforded to humans is not to be understated as it is well documented that the addition of trees improves the mental wellbeing and health of the local population.
The planting started in October when staff from The Jersey Royal Company became available after their initial isolating and testing was complete. The stock of cell-grown plants was succeeded by a supply of bare rooted ones, with the last few being planted last week. The weather proved to be mild and rather wet for most of the planting campaign but it did not dampen the enthusiasm of the team. They worked steadily, linking up the existing hedging and trees with new corridors to take care of all types of wildlife that will benefit in the future as a result. The funding of this part of the work, including trees, materials, and labour was met by the Countryside Enhancement Scheme, supported by the Environment Department, whilst the Roy Overland Charitable Trust has generously covered project management costs. The Trust is also enormously grateful to The Jersey Royal Company for their ongoing support and commitment to this project.
The start of the year in 2021 will see the work resume with another 4,500 hedging whips being planted. A fund has been kept separate from donations by the National Trust’s Members as well as the general public. People are still being invited to help the Trust’s campaign to care for countryside by donating £5.00 per metre of planting, details of which can be found on the Trust’s website.
Another initiative that will be carried out in the New Year is to carry out replacement planting for hedging plants and trees that did not survive the summer. The Trust has committed to care for the newly planted whips for at least 2 years as maintenance is vital to ensure the success of the planting. Conrad Evans, the Hedge Fund Coordinator said “Aftercare is crucial to ensure the numerous lengths of hedgerow are not smothered by undergrowth and lost for ever. It is a big commitment and I would always advise people to ensure enough time is devoted to take care of what has been planted otherwise time and resources are easily wasted.”
Charles Alluto, CEO of The National Trust for Jersey, commented:
It is amazing that the Trust has managed to plant 40,000 hedging plants equivalent to 20 miles of hedgerow over the last 18 months. This is down to the commitment and support of our funding partners, our donors, The Jersey Royal Company, land owners, our hedgerow co-ordinator and our band of volunteers who have worked tirelessly during the pandemic. These hedgerows are a legacy to all of the above for helping us to care and restore Jersey’s rural agricultural landscape. We are enormously grateful to one and all.