Stumped: unidentified street tree

On Curlew Street, in that late eighties enclave of converted spice warehouses just east of Tower Bridge on the south bank of the Thames, I have noticed a curious tree. Planted, I imagine, when the area was being cleaned up, they look to me like Giraffe fodder: tall trees with long branches, each bearing a... Continue Reading →

Red Oak lives up to its name

In a post about the North American Red Oak (Quercus rubra) I wrote in the balmy days of August, I rather flippantly stated that ”... the beauty of this tree in its native New World is surely its fiery autumn colours which in our damper and milder oceanic climate is watered down from a rich... Continue Reading →

Strawberry trees in Southwark

I was surprised and excited to bump into a row of newly planted Strawberry Trees (Arbutus unedo) in a Southwark street recently. As a child with an interest in native trees, I was fascinated to read about this mysterious tree with a compelling name in my botanical guidebooks. It was described as very rare and... Continue Reading →

Persian Silk in Globe Street

I was transfixed by the charms of a Persian Silk Tree (Albizia julibrissin) in Southwark today. A most majestic and unusual (for England) street tree, in fact a rarely-planted tree anywhere in the UK, street or otherwise. This is perhaps a cautious test planting to see what happens - the tree has a reputation for... Continue Reading →

A Tree Grows in Bermondsey

The Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima) is a common tree of street plantings, parks and gardens, in fact it pops up everywhere. It has a curious habit (in London at least) of blending in, it has a passing resemblence to the Ash (Fraxinus excelsior) or the Walnut (Juglans regia) and seems inoffensive when it first... Continue Reading →

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