Needing fresh air after several days hunched over a computer, yesterday afternoon I went out for a local walk. As I've recently been reading "Woodlands" by Oliver Rackham, part of the New Naturalist Library, I was paying more attention than usual to the individual trees.
Along the lane, I noticed oak and ash and thorn, and thought of the Kipling poem "A Tree Song".
On the other side of the lane are a row of lime trees -
Then walking through the fields towards the farm, there's a large solitary ash tree in the hedge -
Along the track leading from the farm to the road is an old thorn hedge, which these days is trimmed with a tractor and one of those flail things, but you can see at the base where it was once cut and laid properly -
And in one place a large tree has been cut down. Even though the stump has been burnt, and is now full of casual rubbish from passers by, it is doing its best to grow with dozens of new shoots from the base. Closer inspection revealed that there are actually two sorts of shoots - the ash of the big stump itself, and some other shoots, on the left in the photo, which may be hornbeam.
"Of all the trees that grow so fair,
Old England to adorn,
Greater are none beneath the Sun,
Than Oak, and Ash, and Thorn."