January photos

I can’t believe it is nearly the end of January and I’m only just getting round to photographs I took at the start of the year. One of them was of the swamp cypress that I had been watching since early Autumn and by New Year’s day it only had a few leaves left clinging on to the topmost branches.

The very first photos I took, though, were of a London plane, as the round spiky fruits were very noticeable against a grey cloudy sky. They caught my eye like some Christmas ornaments dangling from the tree top. It won’t be long before they become fluffier balls and begin to break up and disperse.

The other tree which I took pictures of is a Cappadocian maple and the tree itself was not the point of interest but the cluster of green high up in its branches. Viscum album or mistletoe in English. I would think its Latin name roughly translates as ‘sticky white’ which just about sums up its berries. Mistletoe is commonly thought of as a companion to apple trees but it will quite happily grow on lime, hawthorn and poplar and in this case a maple tree. It’s a semi-parasitic, evergreen shrub and this one is a sizeable specimen so I’ve no idea how long it’s been growing there. I didn’t notice it in the summer but then there were all the tree’s leaves to camouflage it. It reminds me that last year we saw some mistletoe in a lime tree at the front of the park – I should go check to see if it’s still there and if it has grown.

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