Trees of London
History - Ice age

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            A few thousand years ago, let's not get too caught up in dates, but less than ten thousand years ago, the ice age came to an end. The ice age had been so severe in Britain that it had killed off the tree life. Slowly the tree population of Britain started to re-form as it became possible for trees to survive. This tree life came from the south where trees had survived. However coinciding with this re-population of plant life in Britain was the thawing of the glaciers.

Incredibly, the iceage ended only a few thousand years ago

            The glaciers were the large mountains and rivers of ice which existed in Britain and in Europe at that time, caused by the freeze; they still exist in Antarctica. The water from these ran down and caused the sea level to rise and form what we now call the English Channel. Yes, Britain used to be connected to Europe by land; the English Channel is not deep, hence it is possible to dig a tunnel under it. By the time the thaw was completed and continental Europe was cut off from Britain, only 33 species had re-entered. We refer to these as native British trees.

The Native Trees of Britain

alder, ash, aspen, bay willow, beech, bird cherry, black poplar, box, common oak, crab apple, crack willow, downy birch, field maple, goat willow, hawthorn, hazel, holly, hornbeam, juniper, large leaved lime, midland thorn, rowan, Scots pine, sessile oak, silver birch, small leaved lime, strawberry tree, whitebeam, white willow, wild cherry, wild service tree, wych elm and yew.

Trees during Human History

click for more on ice age history:

click What is a glacier:

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Trees of London        A James Wilkinson Publication ©