Alder. —

A comparatively short tree that prefers a moist soil. The bark is rough, cracked and dark. The leaves stay on the tree when most others have fallen. Leaves have short stalks and are sticky in their early days.

Apple, Wild or Crab.

A bushy tree, the trunk usually twisted, gnarled and irregular, while the branches are matted together in what appears a tangled mass. The flower is five-petalled and white, flushed with pink. The fruit is too sour to be eaten raw, but makes excellent jelly.


Grows to a fairly commanding size, and other plants do not thrive under it. Trunk, ridged and more grey than brown in colour. The leaflets are placed in pairs along a central stalk. They appear late and fall early. The fruits, known as keys, are seldom found on a tree less than thirty or forty years old.

Mountain Ash.

Sometimes called the Rowan. No relation to the true Ash, merely resembling the latter so far as the leaves are concerned. Trunk, usually erect, shiny and provided with horizontal score-marks. Branches tend to point up. Tiny flowers occur in clusters, which eventually turn into bunches of bright red berries.


A kind of laurel, which, though a bush, attains great proportions under favourable conditions. An evergreen, though not strictly hardy. Glossy leaves. Berries, green at first, then purple. They are very rare.


A tall tree with smooth grey bark, provided with hori- zontal score-marks. There is little or no undergrowth in a beech-forest. The leaves are thin, much crinkled and fringed, when young. In October, they serve more than others to give the delightful tints of autumn.


Usually seen as a tree of no more than medium height. Easily recognised by its silvery, papery bark, which is constantly being shed.


Known also, as the Sloe; a member of the primus family. Usually grows as a bush, but sometimes as a tree with a black bark. Very early in spring, tiny white-petalled flowers enshroud it in a mass of white. Brandies are spined with very sharp spikes.


A bushy tree with yellow-green flowers, small and four-petalled. Leaves are alternate and stems often purplish.

Cherry. Bird Cherry.

Fair sized, with straggling branches and smooth grey trunk. The white flowers occur in scattered twos and threes. This tree is more common in the north than the south of England.

Wild Cherry.

More often a bush than a tree. Flowers, white, five-petalled and shaped in the form of a cup. Seldom occurs further North than Northumberland.

Chestnut. Horse Chestnut.

A tall tree with a thick, scaly and only slightly ridged trunk. Branches rise at first and then have a tendency to droop. Flowers occur in pyramidal groups known as candles; white or salmon-red. Note the sticky large buds on the bare tree in winter. Not a real Chestnut—’dog’ and ‘horse,’ usually mean ‘false.’

Sweet Chestnut.

A tall tree with thick trunk, spirally and deeply ridged. Flowers occur in form of catkin-like threads. This is the real Chestnut.

To recognise the nuts of both these trees, refer to the matter under Fruits, Wild.


An evergreen, cone-bearing tree, popular in gardens and often found in ancient burial- grounds. The bark is dark brown, furrowed perpendicularly, though one variety (Lawson) has red-brown bark. In England, the cypress seldom reaches 15 feet, though in its native home it will extend to 200 feet or more. The leaves are scale-like, without stalks, and overlap regularly.


Occurs as a hedgerow bush. The stems of branches are often reddish. The leaves are oval and occur opposite each other on the branches. The flowers are very tiny and white, with four petals. They occur in large groups at the head of the branches.


Habit, very much like dogwood, but can be identified by the leaves, which are made up of five, seven, or nine pointed leaflets. The flowers are very tiny and creamy white with five petals. They occur in larger and flatter groups than those of the dogwood.

Elm. Common Elm.

A tall tree with a straight, stout trunk and horizontal branches which are often too weighty for the tree to support. The general outline of the tree is often curved at the top. The bole is uniformly ridged, with vertical grooves of short length. The flowers are inconspicuous.

Wych Elm.

Smaller than the common elm, with a trunk less straight, often forked, and side branches which curve up, then down. The bole is often given an untidy appearance by the presence of flakes of cork. Note that the leaf of the wych elm is not quite symmetrical—I.e. the portion on one side of the midrib docs not balance that on the other.

Fir, Douglas.

A tall conical tree, with a pointed tip and symmetrical branches, which have the tendency of drooping, so that the lowest of them touch the ground at the ends. The leaves consist of ‘needles,’ which occur in tliree or four ranks. They possess a stteak of wax.


Usually a bush forming part of a hedge, though not uncommonly a short tree. When the latter, it has a trunk very irregular and much twisted.

The brandies are armed with sharp spines. This tree provides the familiar flower, may. ‘Ne’er cast a clout till the may is out.’


Usually a bush forming part of a hedge. Note the presence of catkins before the leaves appear. As the foliage greatly resembles that of other trees, it should be remembered that the leaves of the hazel are arranged alternately.


A small tree, pyramidal in shape when it has been able to develop naturally. The trunk, when present, is a light grey-black. Leaves are glossy and less prickly when growing at the top of the tree. Note that a large percentage of the leaves are deformed .


A tall tree somewhat resembling the beech in shape. Its trunk, however, is very distinctive; there are vertical ridges which converge at irregular points and so form long, weird lozenge shapes. Note that the leaves are rough and hairy on the under surface.


Although generally known as a climber on house walls. Ivy is a shrub or tree. The leaf has three or five triangular lobes, is stalked, evergreen, and of a glossy dark green. On the flowering branches the leaves are not lobed.


An evergreen bush or stumpy tree, with a characteristic red bark which is apt to peel away. The flowers are tiny balls of fluff situated in the angles formed by leaves and branches. Note the spines, which occur in threes.


A pyramidal tree, the branches of which curve gracefully. The lowest branches usually touch the ground. The leaves occur in whorls regu larly along the branches.


A tall, stately tree, when permitted to grow untrimmed. The branches tend to curve downwards, and the trunk is straight and erect. The flowers are a light yellow, very tiny, and four or five on short stalks which join up to a longer stalk.

Maple, Common.

This species seldom assumes commanding proportions, except in the case of the sycamore—which see. It is best recognised by its leaves, which are more indented and finger-like than those of the sycamore. Its stalks are reddish, the bark is also reddish, and the flowers are greenish yellow.

Mountain Ash.

See Ash.

Oak. Common Oak.

A tall, commanding tree, with branches standing out horizontally. The bark is a medium brown, rough, but of even texture. The female flowers are small isolated balls clothed in scales, while the male flowers are small knobs occurring in clusters along a hanging stalk. Both are yellowish green.

Holm Oak.

An evergreen tree which sometimes assumes large proportions. The lowest branches often touch the ground. The leaves are leathery and glossy, resembling a spineless holly, while the bark is smoother than that of the common oak, and also blacker. The leaf is smaller.

Turkey Oak.

A tree as commanding as the common oak, but the shape is that of a well-formed pyramid. The trunk is stiffly erect, and the bark is dark. The leaf is larger.

Pine, Scots.

Sec Scots Pine.


A tree of medium height, loosely knit together, but with a stiff, straight trunk. The bark is shed in large flakes, leaving behind a clean patch of the trunk, which is greenish yellow.

Poplar. Aspen Poplar.

One of the smallest poplar trees. Its general form is slender and graceful, with drooping branches. The trunk is smooth and light-coloured. The leaf buds are somewhat sticky and slightly hairy. The leaves hang on long stalks and quiver in the wind.

Black Poplar.

A larger and fuller tree than the above. The branches point upwards. The trunk is rough. The leaf buds are sticky and not hairy.

Lombardy Poplar.

Easily recognised—very tall, upright, and branches not outspread. Bark, rough and much lined. The leaf buds are sticky.

White Poplar.

A tall tree, much branched. Bark, smooth and light coloured. Leaf buds, white, hairy, and not sticky; foliage a silver green.


Quite small for a tree, but popular for use in hedges, both in green and variegated types. Leaf, broad and lance-shaped; a dark, glossy green with short stalk, set opposite each other on the twigs. Flower white and small, often overlooked among the foliage.

Scots Pine.

A tall, majestic tree, sometimes 100 feet high. Branches usually congregated about the half-way line of the trunk, and matted with foliage near the tips. Bark reveals a series of fissure lines of irregular shape. Leaves, green needles, sharp-pointed, occurring in bunches of two at a time.


Not a large tree. Bark, a uniform dark brown, but very rough. Branches usually curve gracefu lly upwards. Flowers white, occurring in little bunches.

Spindle.-—A short tree or a voluminous bush. Flowers, greenish-white and shaped like a cup, formed of four or six petals. Twigs are not circular, but four-angled. Leaves, glossy and very variable in shape.


A tall fir tree, pyramidal in form, much like the Douglas fir, but less pointed at tip, and not so tall. Used for Christmas trees when two or three years old. Trunk is smooth and brown when tree is young, but rough and encrusted when old. Leaves are needles, having four sides.


Much taller than the common maple, well proportioned, but the trunk is seldom vertical throughout. Side branches very much twisted. The trunk is rough, but not deeply furrowed. Leaf stalks often reddish underneath. Flower, long, pendulous and green.

Walnut.-—A tall, commanding tree, with an uneven trunk and much twisted branches. The bark is grey-black, smooth at first, then broken up with a mass of cracks. When in foliage, the tree appears very full and well clothed.

The male flowers are catkins, and the female flowers are small swellings at the stalk tips.

Wayfaring Tree.

This is a bush which lives in wayside hedges. It can be recognised by its hairy stalks, which always leave the main stem in pairs. The flowers are white, tiny, five-petalled, and occur in small groups. The leaves are much furrowed by the veins. Note the large leaf buds in winter.

White Beam.

A tree which is usually small. The trunk is smooth, greyish, and marked with a few horizontal slits. The branches are very irregularly formed, though the tree itself is a shapely pyramid. The flowers are white, five-petalled, small, and occur in clusters. The leaf varies considerably in outline.

Willow. Crack Willow.

A shrub or tree of fair proportions with upstanding branches. The bark is rough and furrowed. The leaves are long and arranged spirally on the stem. The leaf buds are very small. The branches are easily broken.

Goat Willow (Sallow).

A large shrub, but sometimes a small tree. The bark, when present, is smooth at first, but later becomes lightly furrowed. The leaves are broad and arranged spirally on the stem. There are several other varieties of Willow.


A large, outspreading, but not tall tree. The trunk, as a rule, appears to be many trunks brought together. The branches curve out gracefully. The leaves resemble somewhat the needles of the pine, but instead of occurring in bundles of two, three or five needles, as is the case with the pines, the yew leaves are set in two parallel lines along the stem.