Welcome to None-So-Hardy

Seed Orchard

In None-So-Hardy Nurseries we take the long view

grow quality forests



NSH in conjunction with Teagasc have recently established 2 seed orchards under the new Forest Service Seed Orchard Scheme. These comprise of a 2Ha outdoor Sycamore seed orchard and an indoor Common Birch seed orchard. Seed Production in both orchards should begin after 3-4 years.

“Qualified” seed derives from the selection of superior individual trees. We plan to test the seed as it becomes available. Our long-term aim is that our “Qualified” orchards will become “Tested” seed orchards.

Birch Seed


The Birch seed orchard has been established in a large purpose built tunnel (constructed by local company D Plant Horticulture) in Ballymurn. Birch is more suited to indoor seed production as this gives more control over issues such as cross contamination from outdoor sources of pollen. The artificial environment can also be manipulated to increase flowering (and hence the quantity of seed).

The orchard consists of 90 individual clones replicated 3 times. The clones are planted in 50L pots and are irrigated through a drip feed irrigation system. They are again laid out in a randomised design. Currently the plants are at a 1*1.8m spacing this will be increased as the plants get older.

For further information on the Birch improvement programme visit the Teagasc website:

https://www.teagasc.ie/crops/forestry/research/birch-improvement- project/

Sycamore Seed


The Sycamore Seed Orchard is established on a 2Ha site in Shillelagh. The orchard has been planted using a number of clones of “Plus Trees” selected from mature trees in Ireland and the UK (through the Future Trees Trust Sycamore Group).

This seed orchard will produce seed in reasonable quantities after approximately 5-6 years in the “Qualified” category.

The Sycamore clones have been planted at a 5*5M spacing in a randomised design, this allows for the crowns to develop for seed production and also maximises cross pollination within the seed orchard.

For further information on Sycamore click on the link which will take you to the Future Trees Trust website

http://www.futuretrees.org/blog/2016/10/13/irish-supporters- day/

Founded in 1991 at the Department of Plant Sciences of the University of Oxford, the British and Irish Hardwoods Trust (BIHIP) - now called Future Trees Trust - became a voluntary collaboration of many of Britain and Ireland’s foremost tree scientists and practitioners from all sectors of forestry. FTT has trial sites across Great Britain and Ireland where they test offspring (either seeds or cuttings) from carefully selected superior parent trees of seven species. Researchers monitor their development over many years. By careful selection and rigorous testing, it is ensured that only the best progeny or cuttings produce seeds that will grow into excellent broadleaved trees that will contain sufficient diversity to be resilient to climate change.

9 May 2015: Launch of the commercialisation phase of the Teagasc Birch Improvement Programme. Teagasc researcher Oliver Sheridan; Lar Behan, John McCarthy, None So Hardy Nurseries; Tom Hayes, T.D., Minister of State (DAFM) with responsibility for forestry; John Kavanagh, None So Hardy Nurseries; Dr Frank O'Mara, Director of Research Teagasc; Nuala Ni Fhlatharta, Head of Forestry Dept Teagasc