Documenting the seasons of coastal Dorset. I'm a complete amateur so don't trust I'm always right. If ever you see I'm wrong - whether with identifications or in anything else - do say!

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

TREE FOLLOWING - JULY 2015

Trees on the skyline - Cothelston Hill, Somerset.
Summit of Cothelston Hill, Somerset.
In May, in a post about The Old Drove Road and Dead Woman's Ditch, I mentioned a dispute over the trees on Cothelston Hill in Somerset. Their roots were disturbing a rabbit warren at a site where there are also Bronze Age remains.. Which should go? Trees or warren? A local and prominent landmark? Or a historic but not immediately visible hang out for rabbits? (Food in the old days!)

The solution? Sensible. The trees (planted only forty years ago) will be felled and new ones planted nearby. (Somerset County Gazette.) Ancient Monument and Modern Landmark preserved. Both.

I hope none of the trees you are following have been destroyed since last you wrote whether by archaeologists or recent lightening! We'll find out.

(P.S. Thanks to Rowan who points out that despite what it says in the article, it can't be a Bronze Age rabbit warren because there weren't any rabbits here then.) 

Incidentally, I took this picture on Saturday (4th July 2015) and I'm writing this on the 6th; and I've just found an article in The Western Morning News  . . . about walking up Cothelston Hill.  It doesn't give the year but perhaps Martin Hesp was up there taking pictures from roughly the same places at roughly the same time as me. Bang goes another post!

I'm Following a Tree
Are You?
Do join us!
More information on the
Loose and Leafy Tree Following Page.
One thing I know for certain (I think!); he won't have been writing about your trees. At least (says she, covering herself) not all of them. Not all on the same day!

So let's hear it from the Tree Followers.

The box will be open from 7th - 14th July.


25 comments:

Alison Levey said...

Hello Lucy - thanks for hosting this for another month. Love the name of Dead Woman's Ditch, though I can only assume it has a gruesome history!

Rowan said...

Hope that the trees they replant are native species. The newspaper report has its facts wrong though - it may be a bronze age monument and it may be an ancient rabbit warren but it isn't a bronze age warren as rabbits aren't a native species. They were introduced to this country by the Romans who invaded in 43AD :) I've just read your interesting post about the old droveways and I see that you say that the warren in Norman in that which is very likely - perhaps they reused a bronze age barrow? How fantastic to live in an area with so much ancient history still visible and linking us to our past.

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Alison. It's interesting how most of us delight in these gruesome names as long as they are in the past.

Thanks for your important comments Rowan. If it's ok I'll add a link to them in the post itself. (And probably revise my own text.) I feel uncomfortable relying so heavily on newspaper reports (even though I know local papers sit a little lightly with accuracy) which is why I try to remember to add the links. So much else of the info. I find is tourist related too. I think I'll try to do a little more research by phone. (Cothelston Hill and the Somerset Ridgeway are a bit of a drive away.) You are right also about the way history gets muddled. It piles up on itself.

There are the remains of an eighteenth century folly up there too. This link

http://webapp1.somerset.gov.uk/her/details.asp?prn=43025

mentions how it's not clear what's barrow and what's tower. And I get further lost where 'barrow' and 'mound' seem sometimes to be used interchangeably. A barrow may be described as a mound, wouldn't you say, whereas not every mound is a barrow.

Oh! Help!

I'm sure elucidation will arrive along with other commenters.

The Exmoor ponies up there are introductions but the rabbit droppings (lots) . . . now . . . are they descendants of the Norman (Norman?) rabbits? Are modern rabbits the same a Norman ones or have they changed over the centuries? Desperately out of my depth!

amanda peters said...

Thanks for been here for another moth of tree watching, sadly even though my tree is still standing, time has slipped away from me and my tree is just the same as last month, so no post. Think I have lost the ability to organise my self and sinking into a pile of things that need doing, fingers crossed for next moth....
Amanda xx

Philip Strange said...

I cant help smiling about the interesting wildlife Martin Hesp mentions on these hills!

mygardenersays.com said...

So much competition for space in our increasingly congested and contested world. Sorry to hear about the trees, but at least more will be planted. I suppose that's something. Thanks for hosting this fun meme!

flightplot said...

Hello I've just posted Liz's Stewartia post for this month. My own post about the fig tree that I'm following will be done in due course. Flighty xx

Hollis said...

A very different place this month! Thanks, Lucy.

squirrelbasket said...

Thanks again for hosting this project - I am staying faithful to my empress tree despite not liking "trees in summer" - the old girl surprised me with wonderful greenery on our latest date.
I felt slightly sorry about trees you mention being felled, but as you say, "ONLY" 40 years old.
As a journalist myself, I hate it when the press get history or nature or science wrong. I despair over our picture desk who always show the wrong insect when one is needed to illustrate a story.
Amazing the Romans started off so many rabbits in this country...
Cheers :)

liz said...

What an interesting post about Cothelston Hill and the attendant articles. It reminds me of a newspaper column some years ago about a town in England where the road was to be widened and some ancient oaks were imperiled. The town council voted to permit the road widening on condition that young oaks be planted where they would line the new road and that they had to attain the same height as the existing oaks before work could begin. I have searched (googled) far and wide to find that story to bolster my efforts to prevent the destruction of "heritage" trees hereabouts; (inadequate ordinances). No success in finding story, so if any of your readers have a clue what I'm talking about, I'd love to know!

liz said...

Thanks to Mike, (Flighty) for hosting and posting my July Stewartia news.

sharp green pencil said...

Not huge amounts happening to my Bird cherry at the moment. It's just getting bigger and bigger and heavier and heavier with, as yet, green fruit.
Val

Donna said...

Well that is an interesting dilemma....sad to see the trees had to go. I have an update but not much as it is a slow growing tree.

Angie said...

There is always a compromise to be reached under such circumstances. You'd like to think that common sense prevails in each and every case. Sadly, not always! I do hope that the future generations will appreciate the efforts made now.
Thanks again for continuing to be a most informative host, always a great read.

ramblinginthegarden said...

Yes, a sensible compromise - perish the thought of keeping every tree that has grown from a self-seeding parent (my garden would be a hazel and holly forest!)...
Thanks for hosting the meme, Lucy

Caroline Gill said...

Thank you, Lucy, for your fascinating introduction ... particularly since my husband is an archaeologist! I'm glad I've made it at last: we've been up in Scotland, keeping an eye out for the majestic Scots pine.

Caroline Gill said...

P.S. Your picture verifier (salad and sandwiches?) took some while to accept my answers!

Brian Skeys said...

Thank you Lucy for hosting tree following. I am pleased a sensible solution has been arrived at and new trees are being planted. Far to many trees are felled today with out good reason and often at the wrong time of year for the wildlife.

novascotiaroots said...

Hi Lucy!! Miss Kitty was out with the camera taking notes for this month, we have blooms on her magnolia!!

Amy Myers said...

I'm afraid I didn't know that rabbits were not indigenous to Britain. Gardening might have been easier in the Bronze Age, but there would have been no adventures of Peter Rabbit... ;-) I must add that I'm relieved to be able to prove I am not a robot by a single click! Last month's attempt to figure out what was (and was not) sushi took place near midnight - and was not successful :P

beangenie said...

Mine - this month - isn't really a following post, or at least I'm not following the tree I'm supposed to be following. What it is, is a rather surprising follow-up of the downy birch I was following last year…

(Tried to write this without using 'follow/ing' too much, but hey...

jeansgarden said...

An interesting dilemma, Lucy -- especially since my post this month is about the value of trees as wildlife habitat.
For some reason, I couldn't see the tree-following link box, so here is the link to my post: http://jeansgarden.wordpress.com/2015/07/12/whose-home-is-this-the-red-maple-as-habitat/
-Jean

telltaletherapy said...

all in one piece but stressed with the dry, disappointing with blossom and only just made the deadline

p.s. I planted a tree in memory of my father but the rabbits dug it out - I say get rid of the rabbits whether bronzed or not!!

offtheedgegardening said...

Phew, thought I was going to miss it again! Looks like this is getting more and more popular, well done Lucy :)

Solarbeez said...

Are there any birch experts here? I'm calling my tree a River birch (Bitula Nigra), but I'm really not sure about it. The trunk doesn't look like any of the trunks on Google images. The catkins are different. I hate to be writing about the attributes of the River birch when it's possibly a different type...
Thanks in advance.
Pat