A real mother of a tree


Just look at this fungus growing on an ancient beech trunk. This beech has been felled and stands - still alive in some ways - on a road just outside Rothbury.

It must have been a magnificent tree - and at least 200 years old, but I would guess much older than that.

Do you think it is dead? It really isn't. Trees like this live on, and give life to other forms, and other trees.

Fungi - we know so much more about these amazing organisms now, and I think we are all in awe.

As the Woodland Trust says: "Magical and mistrusted. Toadstools and mushrooms are associated with ancient taboos, dung, death and decomposition. But trees rely on fungi and we're just starting to understand how close this relationship is: great networks that link and support trees and woodland life. They come in dazzling shapes, colours and sizes; even working with other species to produce different organisms."


This beech trunk not only hosts a range of fungi, but also has growing in it certain other trees. You can see a Sitka Spruce sprouting.


The ground round about is so fertile, pull away some of the moss and you find a whole story waiting to be read, of trees and plants which have lived and died and contributed to really beautiful, rich, compost. No wonder all the woodland trees have sent their seeds this way. Oaks, Beech, Birch - all kinds of treelings are trying their luck in this rich ground.


Wonderful!


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