Agriculture in Hahkiala
According to history books the Hahkiala estate totalled around 8000 hectacres at the biggest. At the end 19th century the estate comprised around 3000 hectactes of land. Until the 1930s, the Hahkiala estate area still totalled 2239 hectacres, of which 215 hectacres were arable land and 1683 hectacres forest land. There were 26 horses, 99 cows and 55 pigs on the farm.
Experience Natural Diversity on the Manor’s Lands
Hahkiala has about 110 hectacres of area under cultivation, 80 hectacres of which is cultivated by Hahkiala, and the rest has been rented to Kesko on a long-term contract.
We mainly produce seed grain for Kesko, in close cooperation with them. We cultivate barley, oats, rye and turnip rape, with some minor exceptions. Machinery and labour are rented from Kesko.
However, we are still working to develop our agricultural practices. We aim at effective and sustainable farming that respects nature. Environmental responsibility is the guiding principle of our agricultural decision-making.
Started in 2005, our landscaping project entitled „Increasing diversity“ included e.g. surrounding the shores of Lake Kirrinen, Lake Hyvikkälä and Lake Vuorenselkä by fences. In summertime, our delightful cleaning personnel – Scottish highland cattle in their wavy, long coats – graze the shores and do their share of landscape management.
Already after one summer the results of our landscaping efforts were clearly visible. Two major changes have taken place: woodcocks have settled in and the shores are extremely clean and tidy.
Forestry in Hahkiala
In between 1920s and 1930s around 1600 hectares of forest belonged to Hahkiala estate. Today, Hahkiala owns about 400 hectacres of commercial forest land. The forest is tended according to a forest management plan intended to enhance forest quality and growth.
We are working to make our forests more attractive to game species. In 2003 and 2004, roe deer were introduced to our forest in order to attract small cloven-hoofed animals.
A visitor to our forest might encounter an occasional capercaillie or a black grouse, but their populations have shrunk in this area due to monotonous forestry practices. Currently, another factor contributing to the decline is large carnivore populations.
We have also built a forest lake in order to prevent nutrients from being washed into the waterways from the drained marshland. Sound forest management is our most important goal for the future. We want to treat our forest with care so that future generations will be able to enjoy the beautifully kept and biologically diverse forest. Tending a forest is very important to us – it is very much like tending a portfolio.