Ancient Oaks in the English Landscape

The Linnean Society of London,
Burlington House, Piccadilly,
W1J 0BF,
United Kingdom
+44 (0)20 7434 4479 EXT 11

Ancient Oaks in the English Landscape


18:00 - 19:00 Thursday 18 February 2016

Ancient Oaks

England has more ancient native oak trees than any other country in Europe. If we take the largest oaks, with a girth of >9.00 m, Aljos’ investigations show there are 112 of those in England but only 90 in all other European countries combined, also counting those in Scotland and Wales.

The two oaks concerned, Quercus petraea and Q. robur, occur all over Europe and even beyond and are among the commonest trees in the lowlands and hills. So why has England so many of these spectacular ancient trees, dating back to the Middle Ages? These oaks are the most important single spot locations for biodiversity in England and must be better protected than they are.

Dr Aljos Farjon FLS FRGS is a botanist working at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. He is world-renowned for his expertise on conifers, on which he has published 12 books and numerous papers. He has obtained several prestigious awards for this, most recently from IUCN for his work on the conservation of the world’s conifer species. In his ‘retirement’ he has switched from conifers to oaks. This time, he is investigating the ancient oaks in England and their history, again working towards a book on the subject.

This meeting is free and open to all; registration is not necessary. Tea and coffee will be served in the Library from 17:30 and a wine reception will follow. Image © Aljos Farjon.

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