Ancient Hedgerows and the Coppiced Ash

I’m on a bit of a crusade for old trees at the moment. Whether I’m out walking or in the car I seem to see “big” old trees everywhere…. screaming out to be photographed and measured.Pollarded Oak

Say cheese!

You see I’m not having much luck with moving things at the moment. Whenever I’m out things just don’t seem to want to be filmed. The deer scatter, buzzards disappear behind trees, even friendly rabbits run for cover. My video isn’t getting much exercise. I seem to have momentarily lost my touch. So tonight I’ve turned to my trusty CCTV camera and have positioned it in the shed, pointing at a bag of sunflower seeds that have been “raided”. Determined to film something… anything…

So that has left me with big old trees. They don’t run off when I approach them, and they don’t get much attention in the winter. That suits me just fine at the moment!

I found this big old ash on my walk the other day. It was growing along what I think must have been an ancient hedgerow. I put myself in the picture to give it a bit of scale. Luckily no one came along while I was hugging my “new best friend”!

All the tree bark you can see in the picture above, from where I am standing right the way across the picture to the right hand side, is one single ash tree. At one time it must have been coppiced regularly, but then it was left to grow unhindered. Resulting in eight stems shooting up into the sky. Two have already been cut down, but the others seem to be pretty healthy.

Pollarded Oak

For those of you who are interested in the stats. It’s girth was fifteen metres, at a height of one metre. Another one for the Ancient Tree Hunt database. Pretty impressive me thinks!

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14 thoughts on “Ancient Hedgerows and the Coppiced Ash

  1. Wow – how do you hug that? What a beauty! Am so impressed with what you are doing. One of these days I’ll get back to doing some photography again – not even into digital yet. We bought one ages ago ‘cos Allen wanted to give it a go but my hands were too painful to cope with the small controls and I never managed to take anything. I’ll pick your brains sometime if I may. I’d love to record snippets like all the different fungi that grow here – have never liked the old botanist approach of collecting and taking home to identify – much better to leave “as is”. Did you know that DWT are producing their revised Biodiversity Strategy later this year? That will highlight all the endangered species and habitats – nationally and locally. It is horriifying that things we thought of as common only a few years ago have changed in status. I dread the thought of the bird ‘flu extending its range.

  2. Hilly. Many thanks for your comment. Since talking to other people about this tree, I now think it may be an Ash Coppice. I’m going back to get a sample of the buds…
    I did know about about the Bio Strategy, but not in detail. I will have to find out more. I’d love to show you how to operate your camera. Or maybe you should get an easier one to use? Anyway, I’ll chat to you about this. It really comes in useful for recording the flora and fauna in your backyard! See you soon. Jane

  3. Jane,
    One of the many things that impressed me when I was last over your way was the depth of time that is reflected in so many things. You have Oak trees older than my country growing out of stone fences that were started most likely during Roman occupation. Yet farmer Bob still plows the adjacent soil with seemingly little notice. Over here a 200 year old tree would be a “Founders Tree”. In England it’s probably just another yard tree. I love big trees. I love old trees. That’s a great shot. Thanks so much. Dobry Den.

  4. Hi Polar. Yes, that’s the one thing I really miss when I’m away from England… it’s history (oh, and English country pubs!). There is a great continuity. Burial mounds, churchs, old trees, castles… all just a part of life.
    Thanks for visiting and for a great comment.

  5. Thanks Dragaonstar. I’ve taken the Woodland Trust link off now… but it did increase the number of visitors to the site, and I gained some very useful historical information about one of the oaks I had visited.

  6. Hi Mary. Well you came to the right place. That’s a picture of a very large coppiced ash! we seem to have quite a few in the area. Thanks for your comment. Hope you drop by again. Jane

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