Make it Wild founders, Helen and Chris Neave
Make it Wild founders, Helen and Chris Neave

Make it Wild team up with UK nurseries to plant the trees of the future

27 April 2020

Family Business, Make it Wild are working with UK nurseries to help plant the trees of the future, having pledged to plant 100,000 trees this decade, to form part of the ‘Northern Forest’.

The North of England has significantly fewer trees than other parts of the country, with just 7.6% of the region covered in woodland. The Woodland Trust is working with several partners including Make it Wild to plant over 50 million trees across northern sites and cities including Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester, Hull and Sheffield which will help to form the ‘Northern Forest’.

Since the beginning, Make it Wild have planted a whopping 36,000 trees across their land with Yorkshire suppliers including Johnsons of Whixley and Thorpe Trees. Their mission is to support biodiversity and carbon sequestration.

The eco-friendly family that run Make it Wild set about their mission nearly ten years ago when they purchased 25 acres of land on the banks of the River Nidd. The land, which is adjacent to the village of Kirk Hammerton, located on the outskirts of York, is now known as Sylvan Nature Reserve. The project showed them how good land management could create a haven for wildlife and humans with 18,000 British, deciduous trees planted along with 8 acres of wild-flower meadow.

New planting at the reserve
New planting at the reserve

Following on from their successes at Sylvan Nature Reserve, the Neave family purchased a further 111 acres just outside Summerbridge near Harrogate, that has formed ‘Bank Woods’, a far larger habitat project incorporating ancient woodland.

Make it Wild encourage people to take responsibility for their carbon footprint. They offer individuals and businesses the possibility of offsetting their own carbon footprint through planting trees. This proved very popular as a Christmas gift, and also with businesses wanting to improve their ‘green’ credentials.

They plant trees and promote the purchase of eco-friendly, plastic-free and zero waste products on their website, such as Bee Wax Food Wraps and Bamboo Cotton Buds. Furthermore, they educate people about the benefits of protecting natural environments.

Tree varieties planted over the last nine years include Betula pendula, Prunus avium, Prunus padus, Sorbus Aucuparia, Acer campestre, Malus Sylvestris, Corylus avellana, Crataegus monogyna, Prunus spinosa, Viburnum opulus, Rosa canina and Ilex aquifolium.

These tree-planting projects aim to help tackle climate change, reduce the risk of flooding, clean the air and improve health and wellbeing.

Founder of Make it Wild, Christopher Neave said:

Johnsons of Whixley have been wonderful partners in our mission to help nature. It has been great having such a helpful business so close to us. They have always been able to assist us with good advice and high-quality trees.

Saplings in summer 2019
Saplings in summer 2019

Marketing manager at Johnsons of Whixley, Eleanor Richardson, said:

It’s great to have supplied the trees of the future, through Make it Wild. We supply in excess of 2.5 million trees per year, making us net contributors to the environment. It’s great to work with such a passionate family business who are standing up and making it their purpose to protect and help the natural world.

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