Maig – The Sub-Aqua Scythe

Maigs are a traditional long reach scythe – used in the Norfolk broads for clearing emergent vegetation in drainage ditches from the bankside. They are also useful for clearing excess growth from the margins of ponds and other water features. I first came a across a Maig on a tool collector’s stall at the Strumpshaw Read more about Maig – The Sub-Aqua Scythe[…]

East and west country reed cutting by scythe – Winter 2014

West country commercial reed harvesting with a scythe.  by Chris Riley In January 2014 I was contracted to harvest reed from the bank of the river Exe near Topsham Lock, south of Exeter. The intended use of the reed on a thatched roof meant that as much as possible of the material had to be gathered safely Read more about East and west country reed cutting by scythe – Winter 2014[…]

Winter Scythe meeting : Cutting Norfolk Reed

On a pleasant bright winters day seven SABI scythers gathered in a Norfolk reedbed for an opportunity to get their scythes out of hibernation for a bit of out-of-season mowing. Seven SABI Scythers standing in a swamp The aim was to mow a section of reedbed to clear space for the construction of a wetland scrape.  This forms part of the Read more about Winter Scythe meeting : Cutting Norfolk Reed[…]

Reedbeed and Fen Management with scythes

Traditionally the vegetation of reedbeds, fens and marshes is harvested to provide thatching materials as well as feed and bedding for animals.  These wetland habitats, like their drier-land cousins meadow and pasture, depend on cutting or grazing to maintain their condition and hold back the natural succession to scrub and eventually woodland.  These man-made habitats Read more about Reedbeed and Fen Management with scythes[…]