George Peterken
British Wildlife 28.3 February 2017

Recognising wood-meadows in Britain?

Woodland and meadow are generally regarded as distinct habitats – but has this perspective reduced our appreciation of places where these habitats come together? After describing European wood-meadows and outlining the history of equivalent habitats in Britain, George Peterken suggests that wood-meadows should be more widely recognised.

Until recently, wood-meadows were a common and extensive form of land use, especially in the countries around the Baltic. Comprising intimate mixtures of trees, grassland and tall-herb vegetation, they took several forms, principally coppice-with-meadow, pollards-with-meadow, fruit trees-with-meadow and various combinations thereof.

Through a naturalist’s eyes
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