The creation of forests is at the heart of our Vision of a UK rich in native forests and trees for humans and wildlife. As a nation, we must achieve ambitious goals to increase the size of native forests and trees if we are to face the climate and natural crisis.
To promote the recovery of nature and achieve results for people, we must demonstrate excellent planning and implementation results for the creation of forests.
Our guide is based on the recent scientific discoveries, 25 years of collective experience throughout the trust and a community of experts. It describes the approach we take on our own domain and where we manage the creation of forests on behalf of others. We hope that it will provide a coherent approach to the implementation of forest projects of any scale.
What do we mean by forest creation?
The guide applies to The establishment of native forests and trees in all contexts and with a number of possible methods. These include the largest sites for individual trees by planting, seeding or natural settlement in urban or rural areas.
At all scales and at all attitudes, the guide strongly encourages a number of key principles. It defines a progressive and long-term approach that focuses on the restoration of nature. To support this, we attach importance to the use of seeds and trees native to the region and maintain the key elements of sustainable forest management of the UK Forestry Standard (UKFS) – and in many matters we go beyond that.
Who is it for?
We hope that our approach will inspire a wide range of professionals and provide a framework in which they can draw on their own knowledge and experiences. Conservation organizations, environmental consultants, tree managers, land managers, contractors and many others will find it useful.
How to use the guide
The guide describes a chronological process, but it is also a reference document and a guide to other useful resources. It is not intended as a prescriptive or detailed manual – we encourage creativity and imagination and use the guide as a coherent approach for deployment at any scale.
The guide serves as a framework to ensure that you are asking the right questions, but that you are not providing complete technical answers. It assumes the involvement of a qualified and competent consultant in each project.
A unique setting
It takes years to establish forests and trees that are naturally functional and rich in animals. This guide is divided into five key steps and encourages consistent thinking about this long-term process.
Clearly articulate the right reason for creating forests through a Vision and objectives informed by a thorough and inclusive involvement of stakeholders.
Understand the landscape context, location characteristics, features and constraints.
Synthesize the information gathered during the site evaluation and balance priorities sensitively by applying a set of design principles.
Choose the right type and origin for your site, as well as the most suitable method of creation, Be it planting, direct sowing or natural settlement.
Take a long-term view, look for ways to build and maintain a naturally functioning forest ecosystem, and monitor progress to assess progress.
A better future
Depending on your Vision, your location, and the interests of your stakeholders, there are several advantages or topics to choose from when setting goals:
- Recovery of nature through the creation and adaptation of habitats
- Climate protection
- Improve people’s health and well-being and ensure access, employment, Social Engagement and learning.
- Wood and food production – forest and agricultural productivity
- Water quality and overflow management
- Air quality
- Soil formation and nutrient cycling.
- Effective forest management will promote the recovery of nature and really change people’s lives.