A few metres away from my house there was a sycamore tree. At a guess, I’d say it was 80 to 100 years old. Its branches were home to squirrels, lichens and legions of insects.
I would often sit in my garden on summer evenings and listen to the pigeons cooing and settling down to roost beneath its leaves. My children loved to throw the seeds – double samaras – high into the air and watch them spin down like helicopters. In late October there would be a carpet of its shiny slippery leaves in shades of auburn, green, gold-yellow, and deep red.
Yesterday my neighbour chopped down this beautiful and healthy tree. I know how pleased my other neighbour will be that her garden will finally see some sun.
Sycamore’s are not a native species here in the UK, though they have been here hundreds of years, and I know trees don’t last forever. But, I can’t help feeling a little sad at the loss of this mini ecosystem that overlooked a corner of my garden. It will be missed.