THE CUT

Our online botanical publication.

GREEN UP YOUR LIFE

LEARN YOUR TREES AND KEWS

26th September 2018

Words by Jessica Peace

Last week we got back to tree basics but this week we’ve had a natter with the gang at Kew and gotten to know some of the big players there - and how to find them…

THE MAIDENHAIR TREE


NAMECHECK

Ginkgo biloba; ‘Ginkgo’ comes from the Chinese word  ‘yinxing’: 'silver apricot'.

HOW WILL I KNOW IT?

Our medieval ancestors gave it its ‘common’ name as its leaves look similar to our native ‘Maidenhair Fern’.

FOR THE GEEKS

Other nicknames include the 'living fossil' as it’s been around for daaayz. This pretty thing has back been knockin’ around for about 350 million years, making it one of the oldest living tree species in the world.

Gingko are pollution resistant and can suck up a hell of lot of CO2.


LUCOMBE’S OAK

NAMECHECK

Quercus hispanica ‘lucombeana’; named after its Plant Daddy William Lucombe who reared the very first sapling of this ‘natural hybrid’.

HOW WILL I KNOW IT?

Its trunk looks like a massive wine stopper rolled on its side.

FOR THE GEEKS

Bark on all trees is made from a ‘corky’ layer, but, the corky layer on the LUCOMBE’S OAK is so generous it can be scooped off and popped in green bottles without damaging the tree. Cheers mate.

 

COAST REDWOOD

NAMECHECK

Sequoia sempervirens; ‘Sequoiah’ was the inventor of the Cherokee alphabet.

HOW WILL I KNOW IT?

Big Red. This has a massive red trunk, green spiny leaves and little ‘pine’ cones.

FOR THE GEEKS

Tallest (living) tree species on earth. Mind your necks.


CHESTNUT LEAVED OAK

NAMECHECK

Quercus castaneifolia; ‘castaneifolia’, made of ‘Castanea’ - the genus (family) which is home to the Chestnut tree; and ‘folia’: foliage - foliage like a chestnut. Boom.

HOW WILL I KNOW IT?

Clue above…

FOR THE GEEKS

This specimen was brought over as a seed from its home in Iran and planted by the Victorian gardeners at Kew in 1846.

 

MOUNTAIN WHITE GUM (G&T FAVE)

NAMECHECK

Eucalyptus dalrympleana; the ‘Eu’ comes from Greeks and means ‘good’ or ‘well’. Like it.

HOW WILL I KNOW IT?

Wrap your arms around this big muscly numba - it took three of us. You’ll see its fat white trunk and its blue-green leaves smell like the inside of a posh taxi. (By the ‘Grass Garden’ at Kew)

FOR THE GEEKS

Its luminous white bark turns brown and pink when it’s feelin’ a bit knackered and drops off, revealing sparkly new white bark.

Now get yourself down to Kew and GET HUGGING.

 

HOW MUCH?

Bang for your buck, around a tenner.

TUBE/ TRAIN?

Kew Bridge/ Kew Gardens

LET ME IN

Daily 10am – 7pm until 1st October - THEN CHECK WEBSITE.