These common trees are unusual in that they are deciduous conifers – their green needles go orange-brown in autumn and fall. There are lots of good examples on the Chevin, with their graceful, upward-sweeping branches. The timber is tough and waterproof, and as a result used to make small boats and cladding for buildings. It doesn’t even tend to rot in contact with the ground, and makes ideal fence posts. Another aspect of their durability is that they are rarely eaten by deer, although they support a good range of other wildlife. The Woodland Trust plant them as protection in amongst less robust native species, removing the Larch when the target species are established. Elsewhere they are commonly trained as bonsai.
By Neil Griffin
Photos by Pixabay