sweet chestnut tree

Above: the clumsy looking
sweet chestnut tree.

Trees of London
London Trees

Sweet chestnut

              Perhaps slightly lacking in elegance: everything about the sweet chestnut, from its leaves to its basic shape, is clumsy, and yet it makes up for this with abundant character.

             The sweet chestnut blends so well in the British landscape that anyone would be forgiven for thinking that it was a native tree. The truth is that it is not; it was introduced by the Romans. There are very few of them in central London: but it is found often in green suburbs in the more affluent areas. .

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Tree Identification

Castanea sativa:

alternate; veins: opposite; long and lance like; markedly toothed at edges; leathery; spring from one another, seemingly haphazardly.

Sweet chestnut leaf
Sweet chestnuts

round, spiky, hairy; seeds inside are those used for roast chestnuts in the winter.

Sweet chestnut tree flowers

catkins which are long and thin with buds; spring from between the leaves and are upright.

Sweet chestnut bark bark:
rough, vertical ridges; brown.
grows to 30 metres; rugged; tall, but not thin.
general: very rare in central London. Thought to have been brought to Britain by the Romans.

Not Map

Kew Gardens and in the Royal Parks.

Trees of London        A James Wilkinson Publication ©