Proposed Native Woodland Creation
Though the Ballygowrie is incredibly beautiful the way it is, it does have its bleak and barren aspects. The land would have been much more wooded in the past. Though I don't particularly want to return to the middle ages I do want to halt further erosion, increase biodiversity, create more habitats for all living things, create shelter from the all too present winds, supply myself with firewood and craft and building supplies and create more variety in the landscape. Lismore has limestone in abundance, quite rare in Scotland. This is what makes it so very green and also so very fertile. It also has the gulf stream running near. This is what makes it so relatively warm and wet. Many many varieties of plants and trees will grow here. Trees do have to be planted in a way that they will shelter each other and in a way that will prevent the sheep and the cows from eating them. I am working on a planting scheme to achieve all the above. There are many small pockets of native trees left on the island and people here are increasingly allowing more trees to have a space. Either by fencing areas to keep the sheep, cattle or horses off the land with fences, or sometimes to take the animals out of the fields altogether and let the land revert to wilderness.
We have a lot of stock on our land and it has very good grazing so we have decided to fence off certain areas, about 3.4 ha (6acres) for woodland. To do all this will take us about 3-4 years altogether as building fences on Lismore is a slow job.