Image: View from our front window in Devon.
THE COPPER BEECH.
This magnificent copper beech wakes us up with a red glow which fills the house as sunlight passes through the leaves. It is at least 150 years old, perhaps older,and the home for so much wildlife.
Beech trees provide important food and homes for lots of species. The bark is often home to a variety of fungi, mosses and lichens, and seeds are eaten by mice, voles, squirrels and birds. Moth caterpillars enjoy munching through the leaves, including clay triple-lines and olive crescent. Beech woodland makes an important habitat for lots of butterflies too.
It stands majestic as always, and in the winter when the wind passes through the branches it howls like some unearthly spirit, waiting for the calm of spring. Trees are the lungs of the world, the home for so many birds which we have heard so much more these days. Despite the mess they make on my car, they are our welcome companions in this garden of eden, for we ,who are blessed to share our planet with them every day. Nature survives, season upon season, bringing its colour and variety into our lives; a kindly reminder that this mother earth has a longer history than any of us and continues to replenish us with its beauty and imperial mystery. With so many negatives in our lives at present, trees must go down as one of the important things we can be thankful for.