Alan Featherstone-Watson plants 60, 000th tree for Moor Trees
Devon conservation charity, Moor Trees, celebrated the planting of 60,000 native trees since they were founded in 1999 at a special ceremony led by Adam Featherstone Watson, founder and Director of Trees for Life in Scotland.
He planted a native oak tree, grown from local seed, at Howton Down, Seale Hayne, Newton Abbot, where Moor Trees are working with the Dame Hannah Rogers Trust to create 13ha of woodland to be enjoyed by the local community as it grows and flourishes.
Alan with Moor Trees Chair, Dr. Janet Cotter
Over 20 volunteers and staff were on hand to take part and listen to Mr Watson talk about the value of native trees and their place in our culture and history. He talked about the context of Moor trees planting in an era of climate change and the re-discovery of ‘wilderness’ as an important concept, both in environmental and spiritual terms. He ended by quoting Dr Richard ‘St. Barbe’ Baker, the founder of Men of the Trees (http://internationaltreefoundation.org/our-history/):
‘Be like a tree in pursuit of your cause. Stand firm, grip hard, thrust upward. Bend to the winds of heaven. And learn tranquillity.’
Since it began creating native woodland in 2000, Moor Trees has planted native broadleaf trees on over 150 acres around Dartmoor and the South Hams. Volunteers turn out on Sundays throughout the winter months to plant oaks, ash, rowan and other local species, grown especially in nurseries at Dartington and near Diptford from seed collected in the area.
Director Graham Burton said: ‘It is a real tribute to the hard work of our volunteers to be planting this oak tree as a mark of our success over the last fifteen years. It is also a recognition of all the landowners who have worked with us to reach this milestone. We now want to move forward and create even more native woodland, so if there are any landowners in the Dartmoor and South Hams areas that would like to establish their own legacy of native forest we would be very pleased to help.’