click to enlarge the pictures

Plane trees

Plane trees
in skyline.

beech leaves

beech leaves.

pond leaves

pond leaves.

pond leaves

various leaves in the
pond at fountain court

Russell Hotel

Plane trees beside
the Russell Hotel.

plane twigs

Plane trees
in the skyline.

Trees of London


Things to look for:

              This is really the time to stop and marvel at nature rather than to set out to identify trees; you will have the whole summer for that and it will be easier in May. At the beginning of the month, the trees are bare of leaves; by its end, they will be in full foliage.


              The plum trees flower the first. In fact, by April they are already beginning to wilt. The magnolias are stiking with their large flowers but they too are losing their petals by April time. The most striking are the cherry trees, particularly the Japanese ornamental cherry trees. These are difficult to miss and worth admiring in mid April.
              The horse chestnut is one of the first trees to go into leaf, and its upright flowers appear at the same time.

The silhouette:

              The beginning of April is the last chance to observe the silhoettes without leaves. All trees have distinct silhouettes, but some are more striking than others. Observe how round is the tree: its height to breadth ration; how twisty are its branches and twigs; how much light gets through.


              Not all trees flower. Some produce catkins like: the hornbeam, the silver birch and the alder. The catkin/flowers of the London plane look much like its nut and in April appear together.


              Admire nature at work.
              Even though they are tiny when they first appear, their shape is much the same as when they are fully grown.


              Bark is still a good indicator of tree type in April as it is for the rest of the year; it doesn't change.


              At the beginning of the month the buds will be about to burst into life. It is therefore worth taking a look at them

tulip trees

Trees of London        A James Wilkinson Publication ©