'The author has done a great job of bringing their heritage (fact and fiction), into a book that will broaden our knowledge of the magnificent trees that surround us.' - Reviewed by Tony Hall, arboretum manager at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, for Countryfile magazine
'Beautifully illustrated...a brilliant record of old remedies, folklore and history.' - BBC Wildlife magazine
Britain's rich blend of cultures is evident in our interpretation of trees, and certainly in the way we use them. When we walk in the woods, we can almost hear the sage voices of druids, the battle cries of Norse warriors, the proclamations of Anglo-Saxon kings. With this in mind, it is fascinating to learn more about our trees: which species, for example, were fashioned into shields and why? Which twigs were carried as talismans, and which trees were to be avoided when setting out on a journey? Were elder trees growing around your house regarded as a good or a bad thing? And why should you never dig up a hawthorn?These are old stories whose origins are lost, but don t be fooled into thinking they are obsolete: many of our tree-related superstitions are still practised, quietly and carefully, perhaps even unconsciously.
In this guide to Britain's trees, nature writer Jo Woolf weaves together the fascinating natural history, folklore and customs connected with them. She explores the countless uses for trees throughout history, from food to construction to curious traditional remedies, and introduces the writers, artists and other famous figures inspired by their beauty. Also included are the stories behind some of Britain s oldest and most beloved individual trees.