Tree following was started by Lucy at Loose and Leafy – info on how to join and links to other tree following posts can be found on Lucy’s page here.
My tree is showing signs of life! From a distance it looks as though nothing has changed, but close up there are plenty of little leaf buds.
What I found very interesting this month was walking around the other parts of the field to see how the other hawthorns were doing. There was a very marked difference depending on their location. My tree is roughly west facing and, while it has a row of houses behind it, on the other side it’s in quite an exposed position – as you can see in the picture below where I’ve marked my tree with an arrow.
Here is what my west-facing tree’s leaves looked like a few days ago.
And this is another tree on the same day in another part of the field. This one faces south and is sheltered (but not shadowed) by another row of trees perhaps 20-30 metres away.
I so much enjoyed looking at the hawthorns in different positions and working out why some were ahead of others and am looking forward to doing the same with their blossom. On the Springwatch Easter special they asked people to report on 5 signs of spring as part of a research project with the Woodland Trust. One of the signs was hawthorn blossom, so I shall certainly be reporting the date of my first sightings. More information on the Big Spring Watch here.
The picture below gives an idea of how close my tree is to water. My tree is marked with an arrow, and the row of trees along the back of the picture are on the bank of a brook.
The tall grasses to the right of my tree are in a soakaway pond, built to provide addtional drainage when part of the field was built on. The pond, though it looks rather murky and unpromising, currently has lots of frogspawn and tadpoles.
On the day I took most of these photos, I also saw a heron on the field. Although I don’t see herons very often here, I frequently see them by a canal and lake fairly nearby.