Oak trees slowly coming into leaf – we’re in for a splash

Ash before oak – we are in for a soak

Oak before ash we are in for a splash

In reality oak pretty much always  comes into leaf before ash. In the last fifty years oak has always leafed before ash. It has not always been this way – in the 18th century when it was less mild ash did often flower before oak – thus the quote.

Climate change has changed all of this – usually oak leafs in late March-May which is about two weeks earlier than 30 years ago. Ash usually leafs during April and May, about 7-10 days earlier than 30 years ago.

In my garden I have 5 large oak trees and a couple of ash trees. 3 of the 5 five oaks are now in leaf  but none of the ashes are.

Oak trees
Green splashes on the oak trees.

Oak leavesPedunculate (or English oak) in leaf and in flower

Oak flowersNot often seen – the flowers of the Pedunculate oak

The two oaks in my garden which haven’t come into leaf yet are clearly a different genetic stain from those which have.


Here are the Sessile Oaks of the Teign Valley at Fingle Bridge – a few hundred metres higher in altitude and not yet anywhere near leafing – spring is a long drawn out process …..


English oak and acorn

A couple of  weeks ago I wrote about sessile oak and its acorns – see here. Here are a couple of photos of English (or Pedunculate) Oak and its acorns for comparison.

Pedunculate oak 1
English Oak – leaves have short stalks and the acorns have long stalks

Pedunculate oak 2Long stalked acorn = English oak

Sessile oak 3For comparison – sessile oak – long stalks on the leaves  – short stalks on the acorns