Nearly 10,000 saplings are being planted this winter in 6 locations across Devon through a scheme organised by Devon Wildlife Trust and the Woodland Trust.
Twenty-five species, all native to Devon have been distributed to landowners in the upstream catchments of the rivers Dart, Yeo, Tamar, Otter, lower down the Exe and around Fernworthy Reservoir on Dartmoor. Working Wetlands, a Devon Wildlife Trust project supported by Upstream Thinking, have been working with these landowners for 5 years.
Hedgerows are particularly important for a variety of wildlife. As well as providing shelter they create corridors for wildlife to move through and also offer natural flood management by intercepting rainfall. The roots of the oak, hawthorn and hazel trees will stabilise the soil, reducing soil loss by water erosion. Trees also slow the movement of water from land to river, reducing flood risk and benefitting downstream communities.
Ruth Testa, manager of Working Wetlands said:
“We’re especially keen to help local landowners and farmers to plant new, mini-woodlands… and/or create short extensions to hedges. The knowledge of local people will be key to assessing where new trees can help most in reducing soil sediment pollution of nearby ditches, streams and rivers, and ensure that they are best placed to slow the flow of water through local landscapes, reducing the risk of flooding further downstream.”
Are you a landowner interested in tree planting and think you fall within one of the project’s target areas? Working Wetlands are encouraging you to get in contact, follow the link below!