Archive for May, 2020

Here is another monthly round-up of tree news articles from around the world – and in some ways trees are more important than ever during the current Covid-19 pandemic. Click on each of the pictures if you would like to read the full stories.

Quinine tree from Andes that changed the world

A BBC Travel feature explores the history of the discovery of the cinchona tree, source of quinine, a cure for malaria currently being tested (controversially) against the Covid-19 pandemic…

Urban planners’ choice of male trees makes hay fever worse

According to the Guardian, horticulturists are urging a better sex mix of city trees to mitigate rising asthma and hay fever problems…


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It’s so easy to see holes in trees as the eyes of some huge pachyderm

It was inevitable when I walked around Llandaff Fields recently that I would encounter one of my favourite trees. Please indulge me while I give it a blog post of its own. This was the first tree I ever followed, in 2014. You can see all my previous posts about it here.

This is a record of my most recent visit… (more…)

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Llandaff Fields – one of Cardiff’s great green spaces – pictured are two of my favourite trees – sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus) on the left and lime (Tilia cordata) on the right

I’m not getting far in my attempts to visit all the local parks and fields for exercise during the Covid-19 lockdown. So far in nine weeks I have visited only two! I feel so fat and unfit, spending all day working at my desk. Anyway, this is the second excursion, to Llandaff Fields on May 6 – doesn’t time fly?

I started my circuit at the corner where Pen-hill meets Cardiff Road and heads on up to Llandaff. That way I first skirted the hedgerows along the edge of the rugby pitches, walking on grass with no proper path. (more…)

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The mystery tree in my garden


Here we are in the eighth week of the coronavirus lockdown in the UK, with nothing but sunshine since it began.

I am very busy working from home for the Cardiff Council Highways department but more able than usual to watch the natural goings-on in my own garden.

Being separated from my Turkish hazel trees in Cardiff Bay, last month I chose a new tree to follow in my own backyard and had some strange idea that it was another hazel of sorts. But now I am more puzzled than ever about the species. Perhaps you can help. (more…)

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It’s lilac time in Cardiff – I saw this Syringa vulgaris in someone’s garden during a recent exercise walk


The tree-following link box has closed for another month. And now it’s spring!

Many weeks have passed since the UK entered the lock-down as a result of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, so in South Wales we can still leave our homes only for essential business.

The glorious spring sunshine continues, which just makes the enforced imprisonment all the more frustrating, although until recently we had also experienced a chilly easterly wind for a week or so.

Any tree-related post is acceptable in these odd times and everyone has found something interesting to say, whether about their usual trees or others if they are unable to visit their first choice.

As always, welcome to our new tree followers. You will find everyone’s updates below, so enjoy exploring…

Erika Groth in Sweden – possibly Salix – and celebrating Walpurgis Night

Welcome to Sherrie and her fascinating blog about books, quilting, embroidery, gardening and much more…
Food For Thought – Sherrie in Indiana – maple

And welcome back to the Crafty Green Poet and her uplifting blog…
Crafty Green Poet – Juliet in Edinburgh, Scotland – horse chestnut

Frances at Island Threads, off the North West coast of Scotland – Populus and Acer platinoides (Norway maple) in the garden

Flighty’s Plot – Liz’s white oak in Lexington, Kentucky, and Mike’s plum tree

JayP – Amblings around Penwith (Cornwall) – Cornus kousa

Hollis – In the Company of Plants and Rocks – Laramie, Wyoming – mystery tree in LaBonte Park – and identifying a water bird…

Pat – Squirrelbasket – Cardiff, Wales – mystery tree in my own garden

Lucy Corrander – Loose and Leafy in Halifax – sycamore, aphids and dandelion relatives

Alison at the Blackberry Garden – quince – pretty pink quincelets

If you are new to tree following, read all about the idea here.

Thanks so much to everyone who contributed in May. Why not join us next time? Just point us to any tree-related post you would like to share, using the link box published on the 7th of each month and lasting for a week. Although we all try to publish our tree followings every month, we are very forgiving if you post less often.

See you in June…

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The view from my study window, looking left over a neighbour’s garden

In every wood in every spring
there is a different green.

[From JRR Tolkien: I sit beside the fire and think

Working from home I have had plenty of time to take in the view from the window above my desk. I am upstairs in my study and the steep, tree-clad garden slopes up in front of me. The view is very green. (more…)

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