Today, the tree is alive and well. ne lo spasimo atroce che lo stringe this tree nestled in a valley and its courses a voiceless threat sodden with war. sotto i lacoontei contorcimenti, A lovely thought, in late summer early autumn the chestnuts ripen to full size,some bursting out of the spiky cases.The chestnuts we buy in shops today are usually imported from France or Italy. And that’s exactly what it was used for – a small road passed through the tree for several hundred years. There are a number of micro-moths recorded that feed on the leaves and nuts. Birch: the birch rods were used for flogging and " Purification " of the convicted prisoners; they encircled the symbolic ax of the Roman … The main Chestnut area in Great Britain is concentrated in England, especially in the southern counties of Kent and Sussex, where extensive stands of commercial coppice, amounting to some 18,000 hectares were planted in the mid 19th century. Want more tree stories? Joanna (aka Juana or Giovanna) of Aragon was the Queen of Naples at the time, and the second wife of King Ferdinand I of Naples. By then, it had grown to an incredible size, which is exactly what led to its fateful run in with royalty. It’s extraordinary just to look at as a structure (in the picture), then to discover the history that’s rooted in this living relic makes you view it in a completely new light. At most, they dedicated a worship which they justified by giving them a divine incarnation : Hawthorn: devoted to Maïa, mother of Hermès, celebrated in May (of "Maïa"). Mount Etna is one of the largest volcanoes in Europe – photo credit BenAveling. I wasn’t aware that your European species is battling the same blight which decimated the American Chestnut beginning in the early 20th century. Henceforth the tree was known as the Hundred Horse Chestnut (or Castagnu di Centu Cavaddi in Sicilian). sotto l'amplesso quèrulo dei venti, Chestnuts are symbols of fertility and abundance. Wildflowers of Coastal Paths, Cliffs and Dunes, Autumn Walks in the Sierra Aracena | NavasolaNature, Follow everyday nature trails on WordPress.com, The Walk of the Monarch Butterfly-Sendero de la Mariposa Monarca. Thank you Steve, your kind comments are much appreciated.Thank you too for the more accurate etymology and Latin grammar, I have amended the post to include the improved information. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. May Man still guard thy Venerable form From the Rude Blasts and Tempestuous Storm. Mount Etna is one of the largest volcanoes in Europe – photo credit BenAveling. una muta minaccia ebbra di guerra.. Sweet Chestnut – Colwyn Bay, Conwy – early November, English name(s): Sweet Chestnut, Spanish Chestnut Latin Name: Castana sativa Welsh name: Castanwydden Felys Family: Fagacaea. There are research projects attempting to breed a hybrid that borrows the blight resistance of the Chinese Chestnut, but is otherwise nearly indistinguishable from the American Chestnut. Take care not to confuse them and enjoy! There are many other sweet chestnut trees in the park but from an ecological perspective, this one is the most interesting as it is hollow and you can walk inside it. To answer the other part of your question, the forests have been replaced by other native species, especially oaks and hickories. Chestnuts roasted on an open fire have been a winter delicacy in Britain for generations. Over time several of the larger branches have layered themselves upon the lawn, giving the tree ‘legs’ and it is known as a walking tree. Thank you John, it was a fascinating post to put together. An illustration of the Hundred Horse Chestnut by Jean-Pierre Houël dating between 1776 and 1779. But each day, for just a few hours, the gates are opened so visitors can experience the majesty of the world’s largest chestnut tree up close. It has a gnarled, many-legged trunk since the main stem was blown out at some point in the past by a lightening strike causing the trunk to split. As previously mentioned, the grand old Sweet Chestnut that graces the Top Lawn of Bodnant Garden was also a contender for the Wales Tree of the Year 2019 competition. The blight quickly ran its course here from the first decade of the 20th century until the 1950’s. What has continued for sure is the song that begins “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire…”. The girth of the tree, measured at a height of 90 cm, is about 42 feet (12.70 m): (2007, Ancient Tree Hunt (Rob McBride)). Even on the low end the tree dates back to the time of Julius Caesar just to the North. Guinness World Records has listed it for the record of "Greatest Tree Girth Ever", noting that it had a circumference of 57.9 m (190 ft) when it was measured in 1780. Learn how your comment data is processed. the great chestnut tree of one hundred horses. Ancient Sweet Chestnut-Bodnant Garden-mid October. There are a few of these super old chestnut trees in Europe. It is amazing to find out how the hundred horse chesnut has survived the Etna’s eruptions along history. In Italy today huge forests of Sweet Chestnut trees cover something like 400,000 acres of the country’s land, which are still grown and harvested for their fruits and continue to be widely used as a staple food in the same traditional ways and also as it is naturally sweet, to make biscuits and cakes. Learn how your comment data is processed. As the pests increase in number the harm increases until the orchard can no longer produce commercial quality nuts. Will lost trees be replaced by other native species do you think? ( Log Out / Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. The girth of the tree was reported in 1781 by Pennant, and from that measurement it is estimated that it is now around 500 years old. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Another poet from Catania in Sicily, Giuseppe Villaroel (1889–1965), described the tree in the following sonnet (written in Italian): Dal tronco, enorme torre millenaria, http://www.italymagazine.com/news/chestnut-tree-one-hundred-horses-sicilys-most-famous-tree, http://www.bestofsicily.com/mag/art277.htm, https://web.archive.org/web/20081205181124/http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu:80/cgi-bin/HistSciTech/HistSciTech-idx?type=turn&entity=HistSciTech001201260012&isize=text. scagliando contro il cielo e contro il fato Sorry for my inaccuracy the first time. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! What a tragedy! The park was owned by the Hanbury family until it was given to the people of Pontypool in the early part of the 20th century.” (Woodland Trust), The Three Sisters, Llanrhaeadr, Denbigh, Clwyd. Mythology and trees Romans and Greeks knew many trees around us. Individual flowers are simple; the male flower has about 10 stamens that are surrounded by 5-6 sepals. Sweet Chestnut trees have become one of my favourite species over the last twenty years or so and I’m always drawn to look at them and of course to take their photographs. Above ground, the tree has since split into multiple large trunks, but below ground, these trunks still share the same roots. Still mayest though Flourish through Succeeding time, And last, long Last, the Wonder of the Clime.”, Tree of the Year 2019: Old Sweet Chestnut of Pontypool, “This amazing sweet chestnut tree in Pontypool Park is around 400 years old. was taken by surprise by a fierce storm. Some trees grow straight and attain great heights, particularly those in woodlands that have competition from other species, many others develop exceptionally broad trunks in relation to a lesser height and there are records from various parts of the country of trees with girths of over 25 feet (6m+). These ancient trees, known locally as The Three Sisters were planted in the garden by three sisters, the three daughters of Sir William Salusbury. by Queen Giuvanna I should have said that sativus is based on satus, meaning ‘sown’, the past participle of the Latin verb serere that meant ‘to sow’. Castanea sativa - Sweet Chestnut. Most ancient trees are conifers, so they truly are special! Due to its size and location, historical records of eruptions go back several millennia. ", "Chestnut Dinner in the Mountains of Italy", "Various illustrations of the tree throughout history", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Hundred_Horse_Chestnut&oldid=980893752, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Wikipedia articles incorporating text from the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Articles containing Italian-language text, Articles containing Sicilian-language text, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 29 September 2020, at 03:09. svettano ne l'ampiezza alta de l'aria.  It is a sweet chestnut (Castanea sativa, family Fagaceae). Sweet Chestnut in Bradgate Park, Leicestershire – September. When I was growing up a long time ago, street vendors in New York City sold roasted chestnuts. This county can also lay claim to the biggest of all, the famous Tortworth Chestnut. Thank you, glad you found it so – I love that picture of my little granddaughter too, I took it to give an idea of the size of the tree, this post’s been brewing for a good while – she’s four now! . i verdi rami in folli ondeggiamenti, It’s the past participle of serere, the cognate of native English sow. ( Log Out / There are many large sweet chestnut trees throughout Europe, but none can match up to the legendary Hundred Horse Chestnut in eastern Sicily. sutta di cui si riparò di l'acqua, One of the oldest at Bodnant Garden, this tree is a remnant of its early, Georgian past. We have older trees here, but we expect them to be so old. st'àrvulu situatu 'ntra 'na valli One of the trees died, the remains of one was left for many years as a pile of dead wood, and one is clinging on to life, holding its own. Pollination may be either by insects or by wind. ( Log Out / Sweet Chestnut woodland is not widely distributed in the UK, mostly in England amounting to perhaps 2% of England’s wood cover and located mainly in the south, so any impact would be largely regionally and locally felt. Chestnut fencing used here to help stabilise sand dunes, In other parts of mainland Europe the wood is used to make furniture, barrels (sometimes used to age balsamic vinegar), and roof beams notably in southern Europe (for example in houses of the Alpujarra, Spain, in southern France and elsewhere) (Wikipaedia), Sweet Chestnut trees are capable of living to a great age and there are some wonderfully huge and significant ancient specimens in England and Wales.