Trees of interest in and around SE23

I was listening to the radio the other day about the Ginkgo trees in Hiroshima that survived the nuclear blast and started to regrow years after in some cases. Now some of these seeds have been sent around the world from these very same trees to be planted for the purposes of education, hope and I’m sure many other things. I’m sure they know already, but I’m going to write to the Horniman Museum to see if they could grow a seed and plant one (if they have not already) - seems like the perfect place locally.

It got me thinking do we have any special trees in and around SE23? I know we have the Oak on One Tree Hill, though I don’t be believe that’s the original.

Are there any ‘special’ trees due to age, size, history, association etc in our area?

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There’s the large and beautiful Cedar of Lebanon in Sydenham Hill Woods. Planted some 150 yrs ago in one of the huge Victorian gardens that used to run down the hill to the old Crystal Palace High Level railway line.

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And another Victorian Cedar of Lebanon, planted in Robert Harrild’s garden at his house on Round Hill. By the 1830s Harrild had become very wealthy by manufacturing and supplying printing machinery to London and the world. He is buried by the main entrance of St Bartholomews in Sydenham.

The tree stands next to the church spire from the city church St Antholins which Harrild also had in his garden. The house would have looked over the rural Sydenham Common and the reservoir for the Croydon Canal.

https://www.londonremembers.com/subjects/round-hill-house?memorial_id=9353

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The Oak of Honor on One Tree Hill that you mentioned… it’s not the original one, no, I think the plaque says mid 19th century.

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Visited (for the first time) last weekend - IIRC the plaque says it was planted in 1905.

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Great topic, and good idea @oakr.

Friends of Mayow Park have a write up from 2018 when they gave a walking tour around some of their trees. Perhaps not as aged or notable as the examples above, it’s still quite interesting and gives some things to look out for on my next trip to the park:

Lots more info in the article, but I found the ‘binary oaks’ interesting:

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A bit off our patch, but this Dutch Elm in Ladywell Fields is notable.

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Another Cedar of Lebanon, this time in Mayow Park. From its diameter it looks older than the 1878 establishment of the park itself. Perhaps originally planted in one of the Victorian gardens that pre date the park, on land that was then donated by local landowners for public use.

On the other hand, it was mostly fields on that side of the path that became Mayow Road. This map is 1870s. Maybe the Cedar and the two Monkey Puzzles were planted as part of the landscaping of the new park.

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I love trees like this - never knew there name before, stunning.

Thanks @ForestHull and @ThorNogson some great info above. I think I might take my kids on a ‘find a tree’ type walk.

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Monkey Puzzle in Mayow.

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Wonderful proof that ‘Perry Village’ is not a rebranding and predates any users of this forum. :wink:

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Good spot. Must find time to see if there are even older maps with the village marked.

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The Horniman trees are all named on this excellent Google map.

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Oh Thats brilliant! Theres one tree I always felt very drawn to during the first lockdown and would go and give its trunk a pat whenever I passed by-I’ve always wondered what sort of tree it is and I feel very comforted whenever I pass by and see it standing tall and majestic and strong.
Now I can find out exactly what type of tree it actually is!

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The replacement ‘Honor Oak’ was planted in 1905 according to this article in Londonist: https://londonist.com/london/features/trees-london-celebrity-connection-paul-wood

They explain the legend of the name too:

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Here’s a well written guide with photos looking at the trees of Ladywell Fields.

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Spot 7 on the Ladywell Fields map, (and number 6 in the description), looking a bit bare, but still mighty:

Standing in the playground is what used to be the tallest tree in the park, a fine female Black Poplar, probably a hybrid. In the summer of 2015 she was given a radical pollarding after a branch dropped on the playground. She should recover from this in a few years …

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Here’s a neat resource for identifying trees. Treetalk.co.uk

Access the interactive map wherever you are and you can try to identify the tree you are looking at. Many other features.

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That’s a fantastic site, with pretty much every tree catalogued!

But why the hole in Lewisham?

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Good question. Not sure who populates the map data with trees. Maybe there’s a lack of contributors in Lewisham?
Or is it this, from the site:-

Data, Copyrights and Acknowledgements

Unfortunately it does not yet cover the WHOLE of London, which is why you will see some gaps in places on the map and you will not be able to create a trail in some areas.

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