Nest Boxes

February 14th marks the beginning of National Nest Box Week. If you are keen to get involved but don’t know where to start, we have pulled together some useful resources for you. Nest box week has been running for over 20 years and it starts on Valentine’s Day, as this is traditionally said to be the date when birds pair …

Scots Pine

The Scots Pine, Pinus sylvestris, (Guibhas in Gaelic) was declared Scotland’s national tree after a nation-wide consultation in 2014. There is a slight irony that it is a species common to most European countries from the Arctic Circle to the Mediterranean, but then most of these nations do call it the ‘Scottish Pine’ so perhaps we can legitimately claim it. …

BFT and Tim Stead

As the Tim Stead Trust continue their campaign to raise money to  to acquire The Steading, along with the large archive of Tim Stead’s other works, we asked Pip Tabor to explain the link between BFT and Tim Stead. Way back in the early 1980s, before the birth of Borders Forest Trust in 1996, the prime movers and shakers in …

Visiting the ‘Survivor Rowan’

Directions to Carrifran Wildwood Carrifran Wildwood car park is at NT 159115. The postcode for the nearby Carrifran cottage is DG10 9LH. This is on the A708 Selkirk to Moffat road, about eight miles from Moffat and about two and a half miles on the Moffat (west) side of the National Trust for Scotland Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve (which …

Christmas 2020 – reading list

By Stephanie Young In my recommendations for reading for the Christmas season, you’ll notice books written or edited by women are in the majority.  This list has been prompted by my book groups and the observable increase in outdoor and adventure writing by women.   Following in the footsteps of Gwen Moffat and Nan Shepherd’s legacy these books begin to redress the gender …

Trial run for volunteer planting

This year Covid-19, has largely prevented volunteers from planting trees at our sites. We have used contractors to plant many of them, but we still have plenty of trees that need to be planted. With a look to the new year, we decided to run a trial volunteer planting with our staff and get some more trees in the ground …

Hope for Langholm

The Langholm Buyout – Imagine a rough, narrow river valley in the south of Scotland, opening to a broad heathery upland, a grouse moor for 200 years, now largely abandoned and for sale. Now imagine the same land in community ownership, ten years hence under an environmentally sympathetic regime.  A wide mosaic of different habitats, broad leaved trees, the gradual …

Borders Tree Planting Grant – Carlops

In mid 2019 we applied for and were delighted to get a grant from Borders Forest Trust to plant 300 mixed native Scottish trees (deciduous and Scots pine). The half hectare site is part of a field used for livestock and is on the windward, west side of a Sitka spruce plantation. Our aim was to improve the amenity, offer …

Our experience of planting our own Borders Woodland

While we were volunteering at The Borders’ Organic Gardening Society potato day, I spotted a stall that said, “Plant your own Borders Woodland.”  I spent some time talking to the stall holders who were members of the Borders Forest Trust, they explained that we would be able to apply for a grant to plant a woodland in a part of …

Gala Policies

Seeking Solace in Gala Policies Community Woodland by Anna Craigen We’re so lucky to have access to beautiful countryside and local woodlands pretty much wherever we live in the towns and villages of the Borders. I’ve lost count of how many people I’ve heard say something along these lines over the last few months, often followed by ‘I can’t imagine what it would …