Installation of new Cactus protectors in the plantation of noble woods of the Muntanya d'Alinyà

29.08.2017 By: UVa

The systems to protect the trees planted in the areas of noble wood production in the Muntanya d'Alinyà have not been 100% effective until now. Since the first year we detected that the shoots of some cherry and mountain ash trees were eaten by roe deer, demonstrating that the electric fencing was permeable in some points.

The first measure to reduce the damage was the installation of individual plastic protectors. In a plantation that looks for noble woods trees, it is important that they grow straight, with a well developed main axis and without great knots or defects. When an animal eats the main tree outbreak, the tree regrows underneath it generating many lateral branches and losing the main axis.

The survival of the initial 494 cherry, walnut, pine, oak and mountain ash trees 3 years after planting has been 80% on average, with the planting stabilized at 400 viable trees (regardless of its conformation).

Even so, roe deer and some cows have continued to damage cherry and even some pines. For this reason, in late August we have installed special protectors designed in Extremadura for plantations in pasturelands. Cactus protectors simulate a thorny shrub that protects the planted tree inside, protecting it from herbivores.

This protection system will ensure the plantation viability in the long term, since it requires practically no maintenance and is a very robust system that allows the passage of livestock and roe deer freely. Let's hope our 400 cherry, walnut, pine and oak trees will grow freely over the next few decades!

Photo 1: Example of cherry tree affected by roe deer            Photo 2: Rowan shoots eaten by roe deer

                                   

Photo 3: The first measure of individual protection was the plastic protectors for cherry. In the context of the plantations of the Muntanya d'Alinyà have been partially effective.

Photo 4: David Manzanera, technician of the Muntanya d'Alinyà installing a cactus protector

Photos 5 to 7: Examples of walnut, oak and cherry tree with cactus protector already installed.