Trees = profit
Trees have so many benefits on farm. Their roots allow much great water penetration than grass or arable crops and thus soil erosion and run off can be reduced. Increasingly hot summers have the potential to reduce milk yields but the shade trees provide for cattle could help alleviate this. Tree shelter in winter for outdoor lambs can improve survival rates too, especially in that critically vulnerable first 48 hour period.
Take a look at marginally productive land which could be planted, and at existing trees and woods on the farm. Trees and woods are often regarded as an unproductive asset by farmers but in these times of increasing pressure on farm incomes, it could be time to think about how they might help diversify farm income, both in terms of generating additional income and reducing costs. Here are some examples.
If you already have mature woodland on farm, it may be an untapped source of timber, firewood or biomass either for home use or sale. Alternatively, planting a new woodland offers the opportunity to utilise less productive areas of the farm and put trees in a place where they can really add value. A mixed broadleaf and coniferous woodland could see firewood production after 12- 15 years and the same wood, if well sited, could be a real bonus for a game shoot.