With an imposing sense of towering beauty and majestic serenity, a well-tended or ancient tree is admired the world over. In fact, in some areas, a desire to ensure we keep these wonders means that it’s not uncommon to find a mature tree in your back garden has a preservation order, to protect the landscape of your neighbourhood and surroundings.
Whilst counting growth rings is the usual way to determine a tree’s age, there is a way of estimating it without cutting one down. Most trees add an inch to their circumference every year, so if you measure it round the trunk in inches, you’ll have the tree’s age in years.
Every year people travel to National Parks and Botanical Gardens to admire marvellous trees and other flora that the natural world has to offer. The Flexicover Team offers some arboreal inspiration for your next holiday here!
Wisteria - Ashikaga City, Japan
The Japanese have a great cultural affinity for trees and flowers, exemplified by the chrysanthemum being the symbol of the Imperial family. Wisterias are a favourite type and the country’s largest is in Ashikaga Flower Park, occupying 1,990 square metres (roughly half an acre) and around 144 years old! It is in fact a vine grove and, due to the weight, the plants’ structure is held up by steel supports, enabling visitors to walk beneath a beautiful canopy of pink and purple. These hanging blossoms are the main attraction and attract thousands of visitors when in full bloom between April and May - riot of lavender splashed across the park!
Cherry blossoms - Bonn, Germany
For a fabulous foliage fix visit the Heerstraße in Bonn's hip Nordstadt quarter. Here you can waltz through this wonderful tunnel, also known as ‘Cherry Blossom Avenue’, where the cherry blossoms are in resplendent bloom for approximately 3 weeks of the year around April. The road itself was an important medieval trade route and it’s a five minute walk from Beethoven’s house as well. The beautiful pink canopy releases fragrant scent and comes to settle on the street to leave a magical sight that will linger in your memory for years to come! A gem of a privilege for those lucky enough to visit!
Angel Oak - Charleston, South Carolina, USA
This magnificent tree, located in Angel Oak Park on Johns Island, is estimated to be up to 1,400 years old, stands 20m tall and measures 8.5 in circumference. It’s sprawling canopy and outstretched limbs give it a massive reach, offering an estimated 1,600 square metres of shade! Some of its magnificent draping limbs rest on the floor and, whilst some of it was damaged by Hurricane Hugo in 1989, it has since recovered and this is a well-preserved marvel for all to see!
Rainbow eucalyptus - Kauai, Hawaii, USA
These trees are naturally colourful works of art and found on the island of Kauai in the Hawaiian archipelago. As the trees shed their outer bark, a bright green colour is revealed which gradually changes to shades of bright blue, purple, orange and red - a veritable rainbow palette in tree form! They shed patches of barks at different times throughout the year, presenting highly attractive colour patterns that draw tourists (and photographers) to this flamboyant natural wonder!
The Dark Hedges - Stranocum, Northern Ireland, UK
This magnificent avenue of beech trees in County Antrim was planted by the Stuart family in the eighteenth century as landscape feature to impress visitors to Gracehill House. Arcing over the road, the trees have become heavily intertwined to create a natural tunnel where shadow and light in dappled harmony through the interlaced branches. This is a wonderfully popular tourist attraction for visitors and has even formed a filming location for the fantasy series Game of Thrones!
Wherever your travels take you and whichever wonderful trees and sights you are lucky enough to visit, we at Flexicover Team are committed to providing you the highest level of protection to ensure that you are safe and secure, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year when away.