9. Rowan/Mountain Ash (Sorbus aucuparia)

Mature trees can grow to 15m in height and can live for up to 200 years. The bark is smooth and silvery grey, and leaf buds are purple and hairy.

Look out for its 5–8 pairs of serrated leaflets which are distinctive. (Serrated means that the leaves have edges like a saw)

In spring rowans have dense clusters of creamy-white flowers providing pollen and nectar for bees. The bunches of scarlet berries in early autumn provide a rich source of food for birds especially the blackbird, mistle thrush, redstart, redwing, song thrush, fieldfare and waxwing. The berries contain much Vitamin C.

The rowan was once used as a protection against witches and planted near houses!

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