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Description: Mature Bird Cherry trees grow up to 25m. Once pollinated by insects, the flowers develop into reddish-black, bitter cherries which are perfect for birds such as blackbird and song thrush. The spring flowers provide an early source of nectar and pollen for bees. Traditionally cherries were planted for their fruit and wood, which was used for making cask hoops and vine poles. Bird cherry is lighter and more finely textured than wild cherry.


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Description: Blackthorn, also known as 'sloe', is a small deciduous tree native to the UK. It grows naturally in scrub, copses and woodlands, but is commonly used as a hedging plant. Its fruit, or sloes, are used to make sloe gin. Early flowering, blackthorn provides a valuable source of nectar and pollen for bees in spring. Its foliage is a food plant for the caterpillars of many moths, including the lackey, magpie, common emerald, small eggar, swallow-tailed and yellow-tailed. It is also used by the black and brown hairstreak butterflies. Birds nest among the dense, thorny thickets, eat caterpillars and other insects from the leaves, and feast on the berries in autumn


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Description: The Crab Apple is the most important ancestor of the cultivated apple (of which there are more than 6,000 varieties), it grows throughout Europe and can live to up to 100 years. The trees can become quite gnarled and twisted, especially when exposed, and the twigs often develop spines. This 'crabbed' appearance may have influenced the tree's common name, 'crab apple'. Crab apples have long been associated with love and marriage. It was said that if you throw the pips into the fire while saying the name of your love, the love is true if the pips explode.


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Description: The common name 'guelder rose' relates to the Dutch province of Gelderland, where a popular cultivar, the snowball tree, supposedly originated. Other common names include water elder, cramp bark, snowball tree and European cranberry bush, though this plant is not closely related to the cranberry.


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Description: Common hawthorn is a deciduous tree native in the UK. Mature trees can reach a height of 15m and are characterised by their dense, thorny habit, though they can grow as a small tree with a single stem. The bark is brown-grey, knotted and fissured, and twigs are slender and brown and covered in thorns. Also known as the May-tree, due to its flowering period, it is the only British plant named after the month in which it blooms. The haws are rich in antioxidants and are eaten by many migrating birds such as redwings, fieldfares and thrushes, as well as small mammals.


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Description: Hazel is often coppiced, but when left to grow, trees can reach a height of 12m, where it can live for up to 80 years (if coppiced, hazel can live for several hundred years). It has a smooth, grey-brown, bark, which peels with age, and bendy, hairy stems. Leaf buds are oval, blunt and hairy, and the leaves are round to oval, doubly toothed, hairy and pointed at the tip. Leaves turn yellow before falling in autumn. Hazel is so bendy in spring that it can be tied in a knot without breaking. Hazel nuts are eaten by woodpeckers, nuthatches, tits, wood pigeons, jays and a number of small mammals. Hazel flowers provide early pollen as a food for bees. Hazel has a reputation as a magical tree. A hazel rod is supposed to protect against evil spirits, as well as being used as a wand and for water-divining.


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Description: Holly is an evergreen shrub with distinct spiked or glossy leaves. Mature trees can grow up to 15m and live for 300 years. Younger plants have spiky leaves, but the leaves of older trees are much more likely to be smooth. Leaves in the upper parts of the tree are also likely to be smooth. Flowers are white with four petals. Once pollinated by insects, female flowers develop into scarlet berries, which can remain on the tree throughout winter. The mistle thrush is known for vigorously guarding the berries of holly in winter, to prevent other birds from eating them. Holly provides dense cover and good nesting opportunities for birds, while its deep, dry leaf litter may be used by hedgehogs and small mammals for hibernation. Holly wood is the whitest of all woods, and is heavy, hard and fine grained. It can be stained and polished and is used to make furniture or in engraving work. It is commonly used to make walking sticks. Holly wood also makes good firewood and burns with a strong heat. Holly branches have long been used to decorate homes in winter.


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Description: Common juniper is an evergreen conifer native to the UK. Juniper populations in the UK are shrinking, and the species is a priority under the UK Biodiversity Action Plan. Mature trees can reach a height of 10m and live for up to 200 years. When crushed the leaves smell of apples or lemons. Common juniper provides dense cover for nesting birds such as the goldcrest. It was said that you would prosper if you dreamed of gathering juniper berries in winter, and the berries themselves signified honour or the birth of a boy. The most famous use of juniper berries is in the flavouring of gin. They have also recently become a popular ingredient in liqueurs and sauces. The aromatic wood has a warm sandy golden colour, and is used for wood turning and carving, as well as burning to smoke food.


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Description: The Pendunculate Oak is arguably the best known and loved of all the British native trees. As common oaks mature they form a broad and spreading crown with sturdy branches beneath. Their open canopy enables light to penetrate through to the woodland floor, allowing bluebells and primroses to grow below. Their smooth and silvery brown bark becomes rugged and deeply fissured with age. Oak tree growth is particularly rapid in youth but gradually slows at around 120 years. Oaks even shorten with age in order to extend their lifespan. Oak forests provide a habitat rich in biodiversity; they support more life forms than any other native trees. Oaks produce one of the hardest and most durable timbers on the planet, even its Latin name, Quercus robur, means strength. However, it takes up to 150 years before an oak is ready to use in construction. It has been a prized hardwood timber for thousands of years, was the primary ship building material until the mid-19th century and remains a popular wood for architectural beams.


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Description: Rowan is also known as Mountain Ash due to the fact that it grows well at high altitudes and its leaves are similar to those of the ash tree. Mature trees can grow to 15m and can live for up to 200 years. Flowers provide pollen and nectar for bees and other pollinating insects, while the berries are a rich source of autumn food for birds, especially the blackbird, mistle thrush, redstart, redwing, song thrush, fieldfare and waxwing. The colour red was considered to be the best colour for fighting evil, and so the rowan, with its bright red berries, has long been associated with magic and witches. Cutting down a rowan was considered taboo in Scotland. Rowan berries are edible to humans - they are sour but rich in vitamin C, and can be used to make a jelly to accompany meats.


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Description: Scots Pine is an evergreen conifer and one of just three conifers native to the UK. Mature trees grow to 35m and can live for up to 700 years. The needle-like leaves are blue-green and slightly twisted, and grow in pairs on short side shoots. The needles on young trees grow longer than those on older trees. Scots pine timber is one of the strongest softwoods available, and is widely used in the construction industry and in joinery. It is used in the manufacture of telegraph poles, pit props, gate posts and fencing. The tree can also be tapped for resin to make turpentine.


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Description: Sessile oak is a large decidulous tree up to 20-40m tall. This species differs from pedunculate oak in having stalkless (sessile) acorns. It also has a more upright trunk and straighter branches and the leaves have longer stalks. They provide a habitat for more than 280 species of insect, which provides food for birds and other predators. The bark also provides a habitat for mosses, lichens and liverworts, and deadwood cavities for nesting birds and roosting bats. The acorns are eaten by a number of birds and mammals including the jay, badger and red squirrel. Historically humans collected acorns and processed them into flour for bread making. These culinary techniques have mostly died out following the domestication of wheat production 10,000 years ago, leaving the harvest for wild birds and mammals.


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Description: The Whitebeam is commonly grown in parks and gardens, but is quite rare in the wild. Compact and domed, mature trees can grow to a height of 15m. The berries are known as chess apples and are edible when nearly rotten. Whitebeam timber is fine-grained, hard and white. Traditional uses included wood-turning and fine joinery, including chairs, beams, cogs and wheels in machinery.


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Description: In Scotland, the Wild Cherry is often referred to as 'gean'. Mature trees can grow to 30m and live for up to 60 years. The shiny bark is a deep reddish-brown with prominent cream-coloured horizontal lines. The green leaves are oval and toothed with pointed tips and fade to orange and deep crimson in autumn. The sticky resin was thought to promote a good complexion and eyesight, and help to cure coughs. These days cherry wood is used to make decorative veneers and furniture. The wood is hard, strong and honey-coloured, and can be polished to a good shiny brown colour.


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Description: The Wych Elm is much hardier than the English Elm, so is found much further north in many parts of Scotland. Despite the English elm's name, wych elm is the only elm that is regarded as being truly native to Britain. Flowers appear before the leaves in early spring. They are red-purple in colour, and appear in clusters of 10 to 20, spaced out along the twigs and small branches. Elms used to be associated with melancholy and death, perhaps because the trees can drop dead branches without warning. Elm wood was also the preferred choice for coffins. Elm wood is strong and durable with a tight-twisted grain, and is resistant to water. It has been used in decorative turning, and to make boats and boat parts, furniture, wheel hubs, wooden water pipes and floorboards..


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