Saturday, 20 November 2010 15:34
The Thames River is not too far from where I live, a short drive down to the bottom of the A329M at Reading. I learned to kayak here and have spent many a Sunday morning paddling up into Reading along the Kennet and Avon Canal or down river to Sonning lock or further. I never tire of this stretch of the river so hence my walk today.
There is always lots to see, today the Alder trees caught my eye.
Alder (Alnus glutinosa) like damp wet conditions. If you are looking for water, Alder as well as Willow are great indicators that water is available in the area. The catkins turn a beautiful pinky colour so its worth remembering if you're out and about.
In Celtic folklore the Alder tree is know as the King of water and its Queen is the willow. It is said that due to the wet conditions the tree likes, outlaws - the most imfamous being Robin Hood, lived in the Alder Carrs as people did not like going into the boggy land. It's also said that the leaves were used as a dye to colour his famous green clothes.
"The blind string trail was a little bit scary but I felt really happy when I got to the end."
Year One Pupil at NHEHS