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The Woodland Way: A Permaculture Approach to Sustainable Woodland Management Paperback – Illustrated, 11 Jun 2001

4.8 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Permanent Publications; First Edition edition (11 Jun. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1856230090
  • ISBN-13: 978-1856230094
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 1.3 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 479,147 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

Ben's brilliant book points the way forward for woodland management in the British Isles and beyond. It covers every aspect of what is in reality woodland stewardship, from both a practical and philosophical standpoint. This book is set to be a classic and will surely mark a turning point in our relationship with woods and the natural environment. --Jean-Paul Jeanrenaud, WWF International<br /><br />The Woodland Way contains a vast body of insight and practical advice, all of it deeply rooted within a permaculture philosophy. The real power of this book, as of all great permaculture texts, is twofold. Firstly, you reach the last page and feel equipped to have a go at it yourself, and secondly you realise how different the world would be if more people were doing this stuff. Ben is a man who has a deep reverence for Nature and for trees and this shines through his writing. For anyone who still thinks that making a living from the woods means flogging the occasional greenwood chair and a few hazelnuts, Ben shows that well designed woodland enterprises can be serious business and that the surface has only just been scratched in terms of potential. The book's concluding chapter, 'The Future', sets out such a clear and common sense vision for the future that it deserves to be published in its own right as a small booklet. Ben and everyone involved in producing this precious addition to the permaculture library deserve our thanks for offering another steady step towards diversity, abundance and a world fit for our children to inherit. --Rob Hopkins, Permaculture Magazine<br /><br />Combines the idealism and philosophy of sustainable woodland living, with detailed practical and legal advice on how to do it. --British Trust for Conservation Volunteers

The Woodland Way contains a vast body of insight and practical advice, all of it deeply rooted within a permaculture philosophy. The real power of this book, as of all great permaculture texts, is twofold. Firstly, you reach the last page and feel equipped to have a go at it yourself, and secondly you realise how different the world would be if more people were doing this stuff. Ben is a man who has a deep reverence for Nature and for trees and this shines through his writing. For anyone who still thinks that making a living from the woods means flogging the occasional greenwood chair and a few hazelnuts, Ben shows that well designed woodland enterprises can be serious business and that the surface has only just been scratched in terms of potential. The book's concluding chapter, 'The Future', sets out such a clear and common sense vision for the future that it deserves to be published in its own right as a small booklet. Ben and everyone involved in producing this precious addition to the permaculture library deserve our thanks for offering another steady step towards diversity, abundance and a world fit for our children to inherit. --Rob Hopkins, Permaculture Magazine

Combines the idealism and philosophy of sustainable woodland living, with detailed practical and legal advice on how to do it. --British Trust for Conservation Volunteers

From the Author

My interest in woodland stems from a love of trees, from a heartfelt need to protect and be close to these vast beings that stand so patiently in one place, observing, dancing in the breeze and carrying with them a wisdom of time and knowledge of place that we can only dream of understanding.
Like many people, the threat to trees and woodland from our fast pace of modern life, the encroaching tarmac and concrete, sent my life in the direction of ‘looking out’ for trees. I have longed for their protection, their freedom to grow old and gnarled, and as I have grown closer to trees and observed our relationship with them, it has become clear that as long as the human race also inhabits this planet, the future of trees is dependent on sustainable woodland management.
We need trees to clean the air we breathe, for wood for buildings and fire to cook on and as a place to share our stories around. We need the leaves for protein, the bark and flowers for medicines, the fibre for ropes and clothes, the sap for our wines, the fruit and nuts for our nutrition and above all their presence for our spiritual well-being.
In the British Isles since the last Ice Age, we have systematically eradicated wilderness in the bid to become civilised. We have cleared the wildwoods and moved further away from the symbiotic relationship of the forest dweller. In our attempts to control nature, we have built large and powerful machines capable of cutting, lifting and debarking a tree in one mechanical process. Yet whenever we stop for a moment, She returns to reforest our striped lawns and uproot our highways. Her perseverance deserves our respect.
Modern forestry has degraded much of our landscape for the purpose of short term financial gain. In this book, I look for alternatives to this pattern, taking knowledge from traditional practices, linked to our future needs. We can work with nature, harvesting in ways that cause minimum disturbance and sustain beautiful and productive woodlands for ourselves and other species.
I welcome the return of the British Forest Dweller.

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Format: Paperback
The author, writes from the heart and obviously has a very deep commitment to practical sustainability. He lives in his own woodlands, 'Prickly Nut Wood' in Lodsworth and he has recently been granted permission for a permanent home there. There are plenty of excellent photographs adding vision to his text. He covers every conceivable issue relating to wood, woodlands and woodland management. Some of his ideas are radical alternatives to conventional woodland management and his aim is to create bio-diversity, a healthy environment, added value products and food, a livelihood for woodland workers and farmers and benefits for the local community. His vision is to encourage such woodlands all over Britain.
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Format: Paperback
We have all read or heard descriptions of how our world needs to change. But much of what I've heard or read (or said myself, especially after a drink or two!) doesn't adequately bridge the gap between theory and practice. The Woodland Way bridges this gap, and does it well. It sets out Ben's thesis and original vision for sustainable woodland management in Britain. I found it a most inspiring book in its practicality and "do-ability".
Ben taught the permaculture design course that I took, and I have him to thank for opening my eyes to the whole PC design process. One can see this process underlying Ben's approach to woodlands in general and to his own land throughout this book. Reading it has opened my eyes to a new, much more holistic way of using and living in and with woodlands in Britain. The range of sustainable, income-generating ways that Ben uses his own woodland is truly astonishing (just look at the amazing "Analysis of Ben Law's Livelihood" in the centre of the book!), let alone what he suggests as options for woodlands in general.
The Woodland Way is packed with detail. For many areas this detail is more than adequate to use the book as an instructional guide. For other aspects of woodland management, Ben has provided an overview that starts the reader on a path needing further information. Here the extensive and excellent appendices come into their own. They are packed with extra information, further references and contact details for many woodland related organisations. They enhance its value greatly and turn it from a very readable book into a hugely usable reference as well. This aspect of the book in particular is very similar in style to its sister publication Plants for a Future.
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Format: Paperback
The problem faced by anyone writing about woodland management is that there are so many types of woodland, each of which can be managed in several ways, so their books often end up as a series of generalisations and lacking in detail.

Ben Law's book is the best I have read on the subject, and it is particularly pleasing in its honesty and aspects of its detail.

This is a realistic book, not given to overstatement.

I am not entirely sure whether there is a difference between sensible woodland management and the permaculture approach. I have planted 150 acres of new woodland and manage it along the lines outlined in the book without ever having heard of Permaculture before, but if nothing else I have found this book has been very encouraging, and feel reasured that I am doing most things "right"
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A forgotten world brought back to life by a true lover of the woodland, teaching in a very practical and detailed way how we can exploit some of the bounty offered by Mother Nature in a sustainable way. The knowledge it contains makes outdoor life a lot more enjoyable and doable.
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I'd recommend it to anyone interested in learning in depth about Sustainable woodland management, permaculture, it is allot more informative than Ben Law's "a woodland year" book that I read before more of a reference book with quite in-depth chapters on application for woodland grants and laws around living woprking in woodlands , very Interesting Informative & Inspiring
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