Our native trees and hedgerows are our national heritage and Tree Week offers us the opportunity to take the time to get to know and cherish the trees and hedgerows in our neighborhood.
Trees have always been our great companions and we have very intimate connections with them – we are dependent on them for the air we breathe! They are also the lifeline for so many other species, offering shelter and food. They play a large role in maintaining climate balance.
We have very rich folklore and traditions associated with our native trees. We find these narrated in Niall Mac Coitir’s interesting and beautiful book of ‘Irish Trees – Myths, Legends and Folklore.’
If you are planting trees or hedgerows this week we strongly advise planting only native varieties. That is because every habitat over centuries has developed its own delicately balanced sequences to suit soil, climate and geography. In nature everything does not evolve, it “co-evolves”. A native tree/plant will form leaves or flowers when its main pollinators are abundant. A non-native variety of the same tree will have different leafing and flowering time from the native variety.
Planting a non-native variety, even of the same species, upsets the natural sequence and disrupts the natural balance, thus leaving the indigenous pollinators without their food and habitat.
At An Gáirdín this week we will be planting another native hedgerow. You will be welcome to join us’