And so it begins! Spring is here and our planting season has just begun. We have a busy but exciting few months of planting ahead of us as our team plants more than three million trees across the UK over the next three months.

Here’s one of our brand-new step planters ready and raring to go, all guarded up for operator safety. These innovative machines are vital for ensuring a precise planting distance between rows, which is crucial for harvesting and small inputs later in the crop’s life.

These fast-growing perennial energy crops will not only provide local biofuel security and a reliable revenue for our growers, but they will also provide a number of environmental benefits as they grow – from water and soil quality improvements and natural flood management, to increasing biodiversity and offering an early source of pollen for our bees and pollinating insects. And the benefits don’t stop there – even young trees are able to absorb and store carbon from the atmosphere, which makes them key to helping the UK achieve a net carbon zero by 2035.

We will be planting a combination of willow and poplar varieties, with a clever mix of SRC, SRF, and mid to long rotation crops for maximum biodiversity and maximum yield and longevity.

ECC has undertaken extensive research and testing over the years to study each of their attributes and find the best varieties and mixtures to reap the most benefits. By mixing certain varieties like this, we are able to extend the spring blossom season and leaf drop period to give pollinating insects more time to feed on nectar and keep weed growth to a minimum well into autumn.

Energy crops can be planted on all kinds of farmland – including land that doesn’t suit traditional farming techniques. With our range of experience and machinery, we can even manage the entire planting process from start to finish, so if you’re interested in diversifying and adding value to your land, get in touch with ECC!