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Saturday, 11 February 2012


This is the elder, I'm following . . .

. . . but how could I abandon last year's tree? I've been following it for several years.

So I went back for a catch-up visit.

Near enough, everything's the same with the sycamore. But that, in its way, is inspiring. It's probably one of the things we look for in a mature tree. Its solidity. It's bound-to-be-there-ness.

And that is true of this.

Its trunks will hardly dwindle. Even if the tree were to die - they'd still be there.

The path beyond might have changed - but it hasn't!

Here it is now . . .

and . . .

here it was in February 2011.

In this picture, the tree itself is in the right of the frame. In the 2012 photo (above) we are a little further along. But give it a couple of seconds and you'll get your bearing.

The Asplenium scolopendrium (Hart's Tongue Fern) is still below it, a few feet down the bank. It looked a bit tired last year, but it's come through the winter refreshed.

Can't all be easy sailing for the sycamore. One of its twigs has fallen - but it has many to spare!

And, between its toes, our old friend from last year (and the year before!) the Arum maculatum - fresh and new and green and . . . yes! still there!

Arum Maculatum
 is also known as 'Lords and Ladies'
and 'Jack in the Pulpit'.

This was what it looked like for the post of February 7th 2011. Further ahead than it is at present - which surprised me. (You can see the whole post about the tree as it was last February HERE.)

I'm a tree follower - what about you?


Patio Patch - Wych Elm - Ulmus glabra‘Camperdownii’
Moongazy Girl - is also following a Horse Chestnut - click HERE for her first tree-following post.
Gardening Ways - First Post in a Series about Gary's chosen tree - a magnificent plane at Compton Verney in Warwickshire.
Gill Heavens of On the Edge Gardening has posted an Introduction to the trees she will be following this year at  - Lime (Tilia x europaea) and Copper Beech (Fagus sylvatica “Atropurpurea”)
Arigna Gardener - Twisted Willow - Introduction 
Hyde Daily Photo - The Tree Un-named - Two Posts . . .
. . . The Bottom of a Tree and The Top of a Tree (with the middle HERE!)
Down by the Sea

Let me know if you would like your blog added to the list - either by leaving a note in comments or email me at looseandleafy@googlemail.com

Ditto, let me know whenever you post about ‘your tree’ and I'll put an updated link to it here.

Remember - you can also keep in touch with other tree-bloggers by signing up with


  1. Those first two photos are gorgeous. They remind me of the "grandfather" live oak on the island in Georgia where I used to live.

  2. I'm so glad I found you on Twitter! As you say, it's the permanence and solidness of mature trees that, for me at least, make them so magical. It's like being a small child again and looking up to a big, comforting adult.
    I think your new elder looks absolutely incredible and can't wait to see the year unfolding through its boughs. And I can't wait till Monday when I post my first tree-following blog - I've chosen my tree and taken some pics already!
    *Moongazy Girl*

  3. It's funny that the Arum is less well advanced this year than last, because in general we have had a pretty mild Winter.

  4. Hello Rebecca. Will you be 'following' a tree?

    Looking forward to seeing your photos, Kit.

    Hello Mark. I was surprised too by the 'last year' and 'this year' comparison. It was the opposite of what I would have anticipated too. I was expecting there to be the beginnings of lesser celandines as well - but there weren't. At least, there were some little green blobs which might have been them - but not undamaged enough or big enough to be certain. Will keep an eye on them all.

  5. Lucy - unfortunately I'm bouncing around from place to place so much (one place this semester, somewhere else over the summer, and somewhere else again in the fall) that it won't be practical for me to "follow" one tree for the whole year. It's a neat idea, though.

  6. ahhh! i really really love this post! you might appreciate my most recent one about Texas madrones :)

  7. There is something very special about trees. This is the first time I've seen a sycamore it's beautiful... so much character.

  8. Interesting to read that the arum was further on at the same stage last year. At the moment I am feeling more like a tree looser than a follower. Hot on the heels of our neighbour's total destruction of a beautiful tree, we have just had to have a willow pollarded, after January's
    winds wreaked havoc with its branches. Too near the house to risk further incidents but still most sad :( Look forward to reading more about your 2012 tree.

  9. How lovely to see the fresh green leaves of the fern and lords and ladies - like other commenters I'm surprised that the arum was further on this time last year.

  10. I really like the idea of following a tree! I've been looking around and considering which tree I may follow this season. You've inspired me! I was even thinking of juxtaposing two trees; one that is growing in a wild portion of local forest and one that is on one of our clients properties that we will be caring for this year. Haven't decided yet but I will let you know.
    One thing about Sycamore trees here on Cape Cod is that they always get infected with Nectria canker and never look healthy. Too bad, because they are otherwise very nice trees!

  11. Lovely post. Many people consider Sycamore weeds because they seed so freely. I love them, we have a huge on in our back field. I have done on post on Willow on http://arignagardener.wordpress.com

  12. whole lotta love in this post Lucy. It's like visitng an old friend and seeing the changes (or not) in them. Memorable words - 'bound-to-be-there-ness.' Catching up with my Wych Elm a bit later this month - thanks for the link up ;)

  13. I not only love leaves, but the trunks give it so much character! Glad Hyde photo mentioned your blog!

  14. Trees are the best! I love sycamores--the kind most common here have, um, patchy bark! :)

  15. Many thanks for your comment on my blog about continuing this. As I replied there it's great to see you doing this and I'll be more than happy to support it. I'll also give you a mention in a forthcoming post and show a link as well.
    I'll also be doing a plot trees post next month as they start to show signs of new growth. Flighty xx

  16. I just finished a book on trees as I know little about them and wanted to learn more...tree blogging..I will have to do this...