Saturday 25 June 2016

Dead Wood

Dead  trees, whether upright, broken down, or rotting on the ground make a significant contribution to both the appearance and the ecology of Milton Country Park.

Two dead tree stumps surrounded by brambles.
By Dickerson's Pit - 13 April 2016

These tall tree stumps, complete with woodpecker holes, are part of a trio of such stumps by the path on the eastern side of Dickerson's pit.  Later in the summer they will be covered in cascades of convolvulus.

Tree stump broken just above ground level with trunk in water
Wetlands - 22 February 2016

More often, the dead stumps do not remain intact and upright, but, like the tree in this image, are broken off by one of the gales which batter the park from time to time.  

Willow tree snapped in two
By Hall's Pond - 13 March 2016

While willow trees like this, snapped in two, are a dramatic testimony to the power of the wind.

Complex of bleached tree roots
Centre of Park - 14 March 2016

At other times, the trees are simply uprooted.  With time, the soil is washed away, leaving a skeleton of roots to bleach in the sun.

Small dead tree on ground bleached white.
Woods at Southern Edge of Park - 3 April 2016

This small tree reminds me very strongly of an animal skeleton.

Moss covered fallen branches
By Todd's Pit - 13 March 2016

Eventually, all the fallen branches will be covered by moss and overgrown by nettles and brambles.  Herb robert is another frequent coloniser of the dead wood in the park.  The logs themselves will provide food and shelter for a host of invertebrates including beetle larvae.

Next: Spring Leaves



  1. I like this Pictures. Very fine work.
    Greeds Michael

    1. Thanks for that comment. Much appreciated.