Ancient Oaks in the English Landscape
Friday, 13 October 2017
Blenheim Palace: The Marlborough Room
£6 - £12
World-renowned Dutch botanist Aljos Farjon explains why England has more ancient native oak trees than the rest of Europe combined and how he uncovered the largest single collection of ancient oak trees in Europe on the Blenheim Palace estate.
Farjon says the predominance of the ancient English oak has nothing to do with climate or soil but is down to the Norman conquest and the creation of royal forests where only the nobility could hunt deer and it was forbidden to cut down trees. During his research, Farjon uncovered the largest collection of ancient oak trees in Europe in Blenheim’s High Park, originally created by Henry I in the 12th century. At least 60 of the oak trees are believed to date back to the Middle Ages.
Farjon is particularly known for his work on conifers while he worked at Kew Gardens. He is an active conservationist and has led the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species for conifers twice. He is author of many books including A Natural History of Conifers.
Nature and The Environment