Wildlife Conservation Group in the

Forest of Dean


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The Cyril Hart Arboretum

Autumn Leaves

The arboretum is named after local historian and forestry expert, Dr Cyril Hart. The collection started in 1910 and contains over 400 trees.

It is situated on the B4226 Coleford to Cinderford road close to the Speech House.

OS Grid Reference: SO624118

Volunteers meet at the Arboretum on the first Thursday of every month at 10am


We have done over 9 years of work at the Arboretum (October) and have made real progress

To see the pictures from 2009 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2010 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2011 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2012 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2013 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2014 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2015 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2016 - Click here

To see the pictures from 2017 - Click here


Volunteer Group Diary




6 December 2018

The Christmas spirit is alive and well in the Arboretum! We collected all the fallen branches, lit the fire and enjoyed a fish and chip lunch courtesy of our ranger!



We found this fungi growing in the Arboretum. The Kingdom Fungi includes some of the most important organisms, both in terms of their ecological and economic roles. By breaking down dead organic material, they continue the cycle of nutrients through ecosystems.




1 November 2018

We had a long list of little jobs to do in the Arboretum today. As usual, there were fallen branches and some of last months debris to burn. There were a couple of tree marker posts to mend. Some of the netting surrounds for young trees were being inundated by bramble so that was removed and the area behind the Acer trees was strimmed.

This photo shows the area near to the Tulip trees which had been cleared last month as it was a mass of bramble and invasive plants.






4 October 2018

A warm and sunny day for the team to tidy up the area near to the Tulip trees and to remove some old logs. We had a fire to burn off the old branches and we , generally, tidied up around the site.






20 September 2018

It was a very rainy day following a storm in the night. There were mainly branches and cut trees to burn off and a large cherry tree branch actually crashed down whilst we were there! We did some maintenance on the gates and put in some stakes to support the Guilder rose and The Spindle tree below.


The Spindle is in fruit and it needed staking as it has grown at an angle.

Spindle (Euonymus europaea) is a deciduous tree native to the UK and across Europe and mature trees grow to 9m and can live for more than 100 years.

Leaves: the leaves are shiny and slightly waxy, and have tiny sharp teeth along the edges.

They turn a rich orange-red before falling in autumn.

Flowers: spindle is hermaphrodite, meaning each flower contains both male and female reproductive parts.

Flowers have four petals and grow in clusters, in May and June, and are pollinated by insects.

Fruits: after pollination flowers develop into bright pink fruits with bright orange seeds, which resemble popcorn.





2 August 2018

Hot, muggy weather. A check was made round the perimeter of the Arboretum of the fencing and tree labels. Litter picking was carried out and it is very irritating to find loads of dog poo bags when there are bins at the main gates which are probably only 100 yards away! Some of the team chopped a large old tree trunk up to be removed and others continued to remove grass, bramble and weeds from the base of trees.


This tree protector was repaired and the underlying grass removed.

This cone had recently fallen off one of the large treea and split to show the insides.




5 July 2018

It was hot! 30 degrees! The team did various tasks - we removed some of the netting round the trees as they are no longer required due to the trees being larger now as can be seen by the Umbrella tree below - we pulled and sheared the weeds and grass where the netting had been - we loaded up and took away some large wood as a lot of large branches had recently fallen from the trees - we re-screwed a lot of the labels on the trees and we put linseed oil all over the old wood on the sundial..


Sundial maintenance! Linseed oil was used to cover it even though it sunk into the old wood very fast!.




7 June 2018

A lot of bramble clearing and tidying up to do! A couple of the small tree enclosures were lowered so that we could get in to do the weeding. Some of the old fire sites which were now black ash were cleared and grass seed put on them.

Resting at lunchtime!

The Lebanon Cedar was completely smothered with weeds but it does not look very healthy at the moment so we are checking to see what we can do to help it.



3 May 2018

An enormous branch had fallen off one of the ancient oak trees and crashed through the fencing into Speech House field. We needed the help of the chain saw to cut it up and eventually re-built the fencing. The debris was burnt and the large logs taken away.

Before and after photos of the fallen branch
















At the start of the day we slightly trimmed the hawthorn along the fencing but left the cherry trees to grow.



5 April 2018

At last, signs of spring on a a glorious sunny day. There was loads for us to do, in particular, there was a fallen tree to remove and the area near to the back gate needed logs wheeled into the outside forest, scrub to be removed from the old wall and abundant bramble to be pulled up which was encroaching across the Arboretum.

Before and after photos of the old wall by the back gate














The Arboretum Team



(March volunteer day had to be cancelled because of the snow fall on that day!)


1 February 2018

It was a bright but chilly day out in the Arboretum today. We finally managed to clear up the masses of branches which had been brought down through the winter.




18 January 2018

An extra day for clearing up and removing fallen branches with three fires needed across the Arboretum.


This is what is left of the rhododendron as the middle part was snapped off in the snow but we expect it to recover well.



4 January 2018

The start of the New Year and there was a massive amount of fallen branches to clear up. Not only had Storm Eleanor lashed through the county the day before, but, heavy snow had brought down many large bows from the trees in the previous three weeks. Some of the trees had been sectioned off as the branches were broken but still hanging from them.

Do you need exercise? On this day, one of our team was equipped with a new pedometer and recorded the following results from constantly walking to and fro collecting the branches to be burnt on our three fires.

12178 Steps - 5.19 Miles - 1339 Calories burnt


There will be an extra day's work on the 18 January here as there is still a lot of clearing up to do!