The process of coppicing is pretty straight-forward:
Coppicing is a traditional method of woodland management in which young tree stems are repeatedly cut down to near ground level. In subsequent growth years, many new shoots will emerge, and, after a number of years the coppiced tree, or stool, is ready to be harvested, and the cycle begins again. (Note that the noun coppice means a growth of small trees or a forest coming from shoots or suckers.)
I think this diagram from Wikimedia Commons sums it up pretty well.
I’ve applied this technique to a few ash trees. In most cases a pretty messy exercise for me as the ground underfoot was pretty boggy and my big forestry boots sink nicely. But I got the trees down, cutting with my chainsaw or band saw depending on the width of the trunk and usually with some wrestling of the tree to get it finally down and / or out of the ground. I now have the inch plus thick stuff nicely stacked away in my shed ready for burning and the rest will be chipped for mulching.
Follow the Woodland link above for some other pictures of my recent tree related exploits…
Now I promise to get back inside and get some ‘real’ work done.