In my experience nature conservationists and botanists in the UK are rather dismissive of exotic conifers and tend to ignore them! I have been in this category in the past. However with acquisition of Fingle Woods and the need to manage the conifers there over a long period of time into the future as part of the restoration works I have decided to fill my ID oversights / blindspots. Over the coming weeks I will do a few blogs on conifer ID particularly as it relates to Fingle Woods. In the meantime I popped up to the University of Exeter and had a look around the fabulous Gardens and the Pinetum. I dug out a really old book to help me around.
A book about the fabulous collection of exotic trees and scrubs in the grounds of the University. Conifers can be overwhelming – especially when the collection involved comes from all four corners of the globe (well you know what I mean). So I chose to look at a specific group – the cedars.
This is a Cedar of Lebanon (native to Lebanon and the Taurus mountains) beside the Hatherley Labs on the Prince of Wales Road (where I did my degree). I have known this tree for 35 years! To me Cedars look a bit like acacias on the African Savannah – tall trees with the branches going out in flat parallel planes.
And this is a Deodara Cedar (from the Western Himalayas) – a few hundred metres down the road from the Blue Atlas Cedar – the needles look a bit like a larch but otherwise the trees and their cones are very different.
Also came across a couple of pieces of art which caught my eye.
The grounds of the University in Exeter are wonderful and are well worth a visit. Car parking is available on Streatham Drive and the Prince of Wales Road – there is a lot to see between the Queen’s Building and Hope Hall.