Sunday, July 19, 2015

requiem for a tree

Ah, this makes me sad.  It's the execution order on the big horse chestnut tree at the top of Hillside - a tree I've known since we moved there in 1961.  "Diseased."  Yes, the paperwork talks about its replacement - but it's not going to grow this tall and full again in my lifetime.  It had those lovely horse chestnut candles in spring, and was a very valuable source of conkers in the autumn.  And more than that - it still gives a very distinctive shape to the top of the road - a piece of rounded vertical perspective, pulling the sightlines together.  It doesn't look bad - I'd thought it must have some kind of leaf blotch.  But I fear that the problem is Aesculus hippocastanum - a bleeding canker of horse chestnut trees, which apparently has been increasing exponentially in the UK since around 2000.  Of course, it seems to come from the US.  We get sparrows, you get chestnut canker.  At least it's not the Invasion of the Giant Hogweed, which seems to be driving the papers into some kind of frenzy this summer.

And no, the ivy at #3 doesn't look too good, either.  But maybe that's deliberate.

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