In the past year we have lost few significant trees, but we have lost Roy Vaughan, who had been their doughty help and defender for very many years. He was very knowledgeable, very sensible, very careful. Trees can become, for good reason, a very emotive subject, both when they are threatened, or indeed damaged, and when they fall on your car, or undermine your foundations. Roy was always circumspect, and as a result his sage advice was listened to by all. We miss him greatly.
Frank Martin, who joined the tree team about three years ago, concentrating on the Hotwells area, has decided he can't continue. I am very grateful for his efforts which have helped to spread the burden. I would be very happy if anyone with a combination of time, concern and knowledge would offer to replace him on the team.
There have been some interest ing developments. Four of the five young oaks in Victoria Square have finally become established. Strangely, a number of self-sown fig trees are growing fast close to the stump of the last Beech to be felled. In the Square itself a young Holm Oak, close to the Cedar, came down rather suddenly, probably a reaction to the weight of water on its leaves. It was almost certainly a self-sown second world-war tree and its deep shade caused a substantial bare area, so it is no real loss. A Pin Oak has also been planted just outside the Square as part of the landscaping of the new pedestrian area, replacing a Lime that had died, and seems to be doing well.
On the Downs, views of the Bridge were opened up in time for the switching on of the new lights by the felling of a number of self-sown Ash trees, an Apple and a Turkey Oak. The change was initially abrupt, but it is interesting that Turkey Oak shoots are already two feet high, and in place of the Ashes, there are now dozens of Elm saplings. Several Holm oaks were cleaned up; two on Clifton Green that had got seriously overgrown, and one near Christ Church, which appeared to be reduced to a few ugly stumps during the summer. The species however is very vigorous, and this tree is already sprouting fresh growth.
Finally a rather familiar story of tree enthusiasm. My attention was drawn to a proposal to fell a Deodar Cedar on Sion Hill. On paper it looked as if one would have to object very strongly. Investigation showed that the tree was very young and exceedingly vigorous in a small back garden and almost entirely invisible from any public place. It is so easy to plant a small and interesting sapling in a garden, only to find it taking over the whole place.
Trees more details.