February 2013 Tree planting

We are so lucky here to have such a wide range of beautiful deciduous trees that thrive. Our own woodland mainly consists of oak (chene), silver birch (bouleau), beech (hetre) and ash (frene). At the entrance to our courtyard is a magnificent lime tree which in June produces the most fragrant blossom which can be cropped for preparing a herbal tea, whilst within the courtyard itself a walnut tree gives summer shade and a delicious autumn harvest!

The most commonly found tree in the local forests is the sweet chestnut, traditionally cultivated in the area for the flour which is milled from the nut. Signs of this old trade are to be found everywhere – most valley-bottoms have remains of the mills (moulins) which produced the flour and our own farmhouse takes its name from sweet chestnut trees (Les Chataigniers).

February is a great month for planting young trees whilst they are still dormant. Every year we plant one oak tree for each family that visits Campels. It is a lovely late winter activity, adds to the beauty of our grounds and helps to sustain the environment for generations to come.