"Planting the first tree on a woodlot in Scotland at Corsewall Estate"
Left to right: Angus Carrick-Buchanan; Mark Rowe; Dr Aileen McLeod MSP.
Woodlot Licence holder Mark Rowe recently got his first season’s tree planting off the mark when he was joined in the woods by Dr Aileen McLeod, local South of Scotland list MSP.
Aileen planted the first tree, which also marked the first tree to be planted under the Woodlot Licence programme, as Mark’s woodlot on the Corsewall Estate was last summer the first to be established in Scotland.
Under the terms of his Licence Mark is responsible for managing the woodlot according to a management plan agreed with the landowner, Angus Carrick-Buchanan. This includes felling and extracting timber for his own use, as well as replanting felled areas. In return Mark pays an annual rental for the woodlot. The Woodlot Licence was issued under the auspices of the Scottish WoodlotAssociation (SWA).
The tree Aileen planted - a Douglas fir, which hails from western North America including British Columbia - was especially appropriate as the establishment of the SWA was inspired by the Canadian province’s own woodlot licence programme. In addition, well-managed Douglas fir has the potential to produce durable timber suitable for a variety of uses – something which fits well with the SWA’s ethos of personal stewardship and local added value.
In British Columbia (BC) the Provincial Government has been running a highly successful woodlot licence programme on Crown land for over 30 years. There, they are seen as an important part of a diverse forestry sector, delivering particular local and community benefits, and as such are being actively promoted and expanded by the Government of BC. The SWA hope in time that woodlot licence tenure will also become an important ‘family forestry’ model in a more diverse Scottish forestry.