Trees

I like trees. A friend of mine wrote a book of prayers. It was a very good book, beautifully written, as you would expect if you knew him. It was elegant and stylish in a very English way. The book was adjective free. He wrote about work, families, meals, friendship, hospitals, arguments, gifts – all sorts of things. Not one adjective. But there was one descriptive word. He spoke of ‘the dignity of trees.’

DSC_0294.resizedHere is a cedar tree.

I’m not sure which sort. There are atlas cedars, deodar cedars and cedars of Lebanon. I suspect this is a Lebanon one.

Pretty handsome.

Cedars can be recognised by their beauty, and the way their foliage grows in horizontal plates. The trees always look very open, with layers of dark green foliage.

They belong alongside great architecture.

DSC_0296.resizedThis, right next to the cedar above, is a lime tree.

There are quite a lot of these in the cemetery.

I’m not sure of the variety. I suspect they are a hybrid.

Lime trees grow very tall – well over a hundred feet.

The name lime refers, I believe, to the ‘line’ or fibre that can be obtained from under the bark. Long before cotton or linen was used, lime bark provided filaments to weave into thread or line. Linen gets its name from the same root as lime.

DSC_0297.resized

Here, with its candles of flowers, is a conker tree. Some people call them horse chestnuts, but conker sounds better to me.

We have a fair few of these in the cemetery, and they crop heavily as well as having beautiful flowers at this time of year.

DSC_0299.resizedAnd this is some sort of cypress or Cupressus tree.

Frond-like foliage, tiny aromatic ‘cones,’ and a dense, shaggy crown.

There are loads of these in the cemetery, very varied in colour, shape and texture. Lawson cypress are one of the tallest of trees, reaching over 90 metres.

Ours are much smaller at the moment, but some might grow very tall.

At the moment many of them have pale young cones on them.

DSC_0304.resizedAnd this is a hawthorn, leaning over a garden fence, and in full flower at this time of year. It is also called May, after the month.

‘Ne’er cast a clout till May be out,’ means don’t stop wearing your warm winter clothes, such as the underpants and vest you sewed yourself into in October. It doesn’t mean to keep them on until the month of May is over, but to keep them on until the May or hawthorn flowers.

So the outflow pipe from my washing machine will be running dark grey in a day or two.

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