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Trees you should plant in your garden

Most people in the UK couldn’t name the trees they see every day. The most common trees in our gardens and fields remain unknown to the majority of us. We should all plant more native tree species in our gardens as that would be a great way to get more familiar with them as we watch them grow. Native species have thrived here for thousands of years and by planting more of them, we help to sustain our unique habitats for wildlife and insects. Here are some of our native tree species:


Alder trees are highly desirable to insects and birds. They thrive in damp soil and can grow very quickly. During the winter, the tree sprouts male catkins and female cones that hang from the branches. Alder wood has historically been useful for drawing out woodworm as well, as it prefers it. A block of Alder wood placed in a cupboard, for example, will leave the cupboard untouched by the woodworm.


This tree was important in Norse mythology as the tree that united hell, heaven and earth. Pagans also held special significance for the Ash tree, believing it to have healing properties and using it in ceremonies and medicines. It’s a highly springy, flexible wood so is used to make things like snooker cues, for example. For any advice on trees in your garden, contact a Dorset Tree Surgeon, like Wimborne Tree Surgeon https://kieranboylandtreeservices.com/

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English Oak

The mighty oak is one of the most iconic of British trees. They are perfect for attracting insects and wildlife that feed on them. They are solid, beautiful and also held great significance for our pagan ancestors. They can live for more than 500 years.


Otherwise known as the May tree, it blossoms with stunning white flowers during May. The berries of the Hawthorn are believed to help lower blood pressure and be good for the heart and the tree is used in many spring ceremonies.


Growing one of these in your garden will supply you with a delicious stash of nuts for you and the squirrels and mice. When the catkins bloom, the tree looks fantastic. The catkins are known as ‘lamb’s tails’ thanks to their appearance.


Another iconic British tree which the birds will thank you for planting as it provides great shelter and nutritious berries. Winter wouldn’t be the same without the dark green spiky leaves and bright red berries of a holly tree in the cold!


A good-looking tree with glowing red berries will suit any garden. Originally it was planted to ward off witches. It is sturdy and can thrive even on exposed and high ground.

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Silver Birch

This tree grows fast so is perfect if you want a quick change to your garden aesthetics. The trunk has an interesting silvery sheen and the sap can be made into wine!


These beautiful, drooping trees are often found in damp spots like the sides of rivers, streams and brooks. If your garden gets quite water-logged, then a willow should fit in nicely. They are graceful trees with interesting folklore attached to them. The words ‘wicked’ and ‘witch’ both derive from the same word as willow.


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