Quercus robur known as the common oak, pedunculate oak, European oak or English oak is iconic; the most quintessentially English tree. It is native to most of Europe and widely cultivated. Its hard wood has been in demand for centuries as a long lasting timber for houses and in historic times shipbuilding. It can grow to fisty feet high and has the thickest trunk of British trees. Its is long-lived with the median age being more than two hundred years and known to reach as much as one thousand years old. It is also rich hunting ground for insects and everything that feeds on them and its leaves and fruit.
Funky Facts File: The Bowthorpe Oak in Lincolnshire and the Knightwood Oak in the New Forest are both thought to be over 1,000 years old. The 29th of May is known as ‘Oak Apple Day’.
We have received many requests to plant oaks but due to the geology of the local area it has been considered that oaks do not and will not thrive on the thin chalky soils, hence why we have so few. However within Hartsdown and Tivoli Parks the soil is totally different, being that it is sandy and very deep. With this in mind ITTWI has spent many, many hours contacting tree nurseries the length and breadth of the country, to source some suitably size English Oaks.The demand for Oak Trees has been incredibly high since the environment and tree planting has become more significant on the agenda, making the supply incredibly difficult. With that in mind, I am pleased to say that ITTWI has managed to source one Quercus robur for Hartsdown Park, even though we have had to double the budget for this one tree.