The London Plane Tree – Field Note about Nature

This semester I am taking a class that travels around London. While walking around London I have noticed the London Plane tree. The tree is quite a unique tree.

Introduction: The London Plane tree is a large tree that grows in London. The trees are very tall. They can grow up to one hundred feet tall. They are special because they shed their bark and shed pollutants that would otherwise reach their trunk. The bark is a variety of colors. The trees can be found all over London.

What does this creature or plant look like?

The London Plane tree is tall and looks like its bark has spots from afar. When you get closer to the tree you realize that the bark is a variety of colors. The tree is very rigid. The bark sheds throughout the year. When it sheds it gets rid of pollutants. When I first saw the tree I did not know what kind of tree it was. I thought it looked weird. When I got up close to the tree I realized how beautiful the tree really is. The bark of the tree I saw was green, yellow, and brown. The bark closest to the trunk was very smooth. The rest of the bark was hard and rigid. PqzD8_-6RP5aY85oEDIf1he0lqWTRfgAg_PW-0w4LDg

How did it feel when I first saw it?

I first felt confused when I saw the tree. I was not sure what kind of tree it was. In America we do not have London Plane trees. I was curious why the tree looks the way it does. I went up closer to the tree to get a closer look. When I got closer, I realized it was similar to the trees I am more familiar with. Although the bark is more colorful than other trees, it looks the same up close. The bark is still flaky like other trees. The leaves are also pretty large like many other trees.

Where does it live?

The tree originally came from Spain about 300 years ago. It is actually a combination of P. orientalis trees and P. occidentalis trees. The two different trees were so close to each other that the seeds combined, creating the tree we now call the London Plane. The tree is now found all over London: along streets, in parks, and behind homes. The roadside is a good place to plant the trees because the tree is really wind resistant.PKDGdN1JW6xXRlfxyrz_8NDfYDsjzzsgFRzrS90V39I

More about the tree.

Even though the trees are fairly wind-resistant, they should not be planted close to one another. When it gets windy, the wind blows the seeds. If planted too closely, the seeds can fall on to young leaves. This is a problem because the leaves are not mature enough to grow fruit. If the young leaves produce fruit, they produce seeds that are not supposed to be inhaled by humans. It is especially bad for people with asthma. The seeds and leaves can take up to a year to break down. Usually squirrels and finches eat the seeds.

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The trees shed its bark throughout the year. The mature bark peels off easily in irregularly shaped patches. As a result the bark appears spotted and scaly. On old trunks, bark may not flake off, but thickens and cracks instead. Sometimes you can see the bark that fell off the trunk on the ground close by the tree. It is very beautiful. It also has a variety of textures. Sometimes it feels smooth, rough, or cracked.

It is easy to spot the trees in London. They are usually the tallest and most colorful trees around. People often go up to the trees and feel their bark. They are common in public parks. There are hundreds of them planted in Hyde Park. Hyde Park is a big park located fifteen minutes outside of Central London.  You can see how beautiful the trees are in the pictures I posted.

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