There are many examples of this sturdy tree in the Otley area. Its edible nuts are loved by mice, squirrels and woodpeckers, as well as Nutella fans, and several species of moth, fungus and lichen have a special dependence on the Hazel tree. There are many uses for its strong timber, too. My neighbour cuts straight, slender lengths to be used as walking sticks, but its flexibility has also been utilised to make baskets, wattle and coracles. It is often coppiced – cut back regularly to stimulate growth as a crop. There is a lot of mythology surrounding it, Hazel has been regarded as a magical tree.
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