Four Native British Trees to Look for on your Walk

In the UK, there are many beautiful trees that are native to the country. For a tree to be classed as truly native, it needs to have been present in the country at the end of the ice age, rather than introduced by humans at a later date.

Trees have a positive effect on humans – not only are they essential for all life on earth, but they have a calming presence collectively and as individuals they also have various attributes that can help, both spiritually and medicinally.

Here are some popular trees to look out for when you are in the woods…

Birch – There are a few species of Birch in the UK but the most well known and striking is probably the silver birch. These beautiful silvery coloured trees make a striking sight and are also a popular tree to have in a garden. The birch tree is a pioneer tree, having been one of the first to settle in the UK after the ice age, and is therefore linked with new beginnings.

Oak – The English oak tree is one of the symbols of Britain and well loved by humans and animals alike. These trees provide food and shelter for a range of creatures, and for humans they also provided strong wood for building, that is still used today for building oak trusses like this  Oak trees are a symbol of strength and resilience, and were highly regarded by the Druids who would hold many important ceremonies under an oak tree.

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Yew – Perhaps one of the most enigmatic of all trees and with a history that dates back thousands of years you can see why. Yew trees have often been associated with death as they are often found in churchyards, however the reason for this is that churches were built on ancient burial sites where a yew tree already stood. Due to the long life of the tree that can live over a thousand years or more, yew trees are actually symbols of eternal life.

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Willow – The enchanting willow tree is often found near the water’s edge and is also a favourite native tree. As well as having strong connections to women and the moon, willow trees have long been used for basket weaving, something that is still done the traditional way in parts of Britain.

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