8 May 2009

Beech leaves

The beech tree has, arguably, the finest leaves of any native British tree: rich brown in autumn and a wonderful fresh almost lime green in spring.

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The above is a seedling showing above some of last year's leaves.  It looks full of potential but I doubt if it will survive the attentions of the fallow deer.

These larger examples (below) may have had the protection of a fence in their early years or, more probably, the deer were not such a problem then.

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The beech is a shallow rooted tree and I assume that the lack of ground flora beneath them in Brede High Woods reflects the fact that their uptake of nutrients and water leaves little for other vascular plants, though mosses do well.

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