‘Hazel Field’ is the North Eastern end of Wakelyns comprising tree lines 45-56 each of which is a double line of coppiced hazels. If you look at tree lines 50 and 52 you see the left hand line, which were cut back to the stool in early 2022, and the right hand line which are about 3 years’ growth. We let them grow for 7 years before coppicing.
That gives staves which are a good length and thickness (about as thick as a broom handle) for use as the supports for traditional Suffolk hedge laying. Selling ‘sticks’ is one of the most profitable bits of the farming! The leftovers are then piled up and left to dry for a year (have a look between tree lines 37 and 38 for the pile from last year) before being chipped for fuel for our boiler.
At the moment, the alleys in hazel field are all in their ley phase of the organic rotation.
In Spring 2023 these alleys will be prepared for a selection of spring crops, likely to include lentils – now a Wakelyns favourite – and others too.
The short alley beyond tree line 56 is also the one which we have set aside for a new wildlife pond in 2023.