Thursday, January 03, 2008

Avenue of oldies

I commented in a post a while back about Julia's Mesozoic garden and how I would share some of our own green fossils so....from left to right we have Gingko biloba, Cunninghamia lanceloata, Cryptomeria japonica and Taxodium distichium.


With (improperly spelt (I don't have time to edit the original I did ages ago I'm afraid)) labels for ease.

fossils label

Big, ancient origin trees not visible from this angle but also around are Liriodendron tulipifera, Metasequoia glyptoroboides, Sequoia sempervirens, Sequoiadendron giganteum, Taxodium ascendens-nutans.
If you want ornamental big fossil trees consider Metasequoia glypotroboides "Goldrush", Sequoiadendron giganteum "glauca" or "hazel steel" (blue) or "adpressa" (dwarf with weird needles with creamy tips that will inevitably throw up a leader and become a proper redwood (cos redwoods just don't do dwarf). Dwarf redwoods, Cryptomeria and even Gingko are available for those interested in a miniature collection or bonsai forest.
These trees are interesting enough for their history but what is really interesting is their future. The same adaptability and toughness that helped Metasequoia, Liriodendron and Gingko survive millenia of changing conditions has made them perfect urban trees! All 3 are commonly used throughout the UK and Europe and in my limited experience of America I've seen all 3 used too. So next time you see a tree in an urban location ponder its history; perhaps the same tree would've been growing in the same position several million years ago. Pretty cool stuff eh?

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