Northern Ireland's vaccination program for COVID-19 is gathering pace, with over 700,000 or close to 50% of the population having had at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. Some restrictions are lifting or easing soon, for instance an opening of many shops and businesses with schools also returning from the 12th of April. However, tourism remains restricted with Panoramic…
County Antrim's Dark Hedges is by now one of the most famous avenues in the world. Made by a local landowner who planted the beech trees 300 years ago to mark the approach to his house; made famous by HBO's Game of Thrones as the King's Road over the past decade. The fine scene has changed much since this image,…
Friday, 26 March 2021 16:37

Cherry Tree Blossom, National Tree Week

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Of course trees don't just give us large canopies of leaves and branches, they often provide some of the finest flowers such as these cherry blossoms. This image is from outside of the hospital where I received chemotherapy two years ago, the dark wood of the cherry and those delicate pinky-white petals make for a fine display and one that…
For today's National Tree Week post here is a fine 360-degree panorama or photosphere of a scenic beech wood in Ireland. Covered in moss and with its own little niche containing water, a wooden rockpool this was one of the finest trees in the woods. Beech trees Fagus sylvatica are not native to Ireland but these characterful imports from Europe…
Thursday, 25 March 2021 00:09

The Mighty Scots Pine, Pine Island Connemara

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Few places in the west of Ireland can compete with the scenic beauty of Pine Island and its attractiveness for the photographer. The small island sitting Derryclare Lough is covered with a fine stand of Scots Pine trees, a native conifer to Ireland the Scots Pine Pinus sylvestris is one of the most obvious trees in the Irish landscape. Here,…
Like my previous post, this is one of trees providing shelter for animals but trees of course don't just provide shelter on cold and stormy days, as seen here on hot summer days too. It was a hot day in Kilkenny, one of those fine June days when Ireland is awash with colour and the smell of warmth as temperatures…
I have written about almost-treeless landscapes in Ireland before, usually upland areas such as here in the Wicklow Mountains. And here, two old sycamore trees stand together alone above the boggy terrain, in bad weather providing shelter for sheep as seen in this image. Sycamore Acer pseudoplatanus is not native to Ireland, thought to have been introduced from Europe before…
This lone and windswept tree prepares for another tough year of growing, its short stature and horizontal growth shows the direction of prevailing winds. Clearly this side of the small lake makes for difficult growing conditions, the far side being more sheltered and with deeper soils supports a small natural woodland of upright trees. Trees provide a focal point for…
Sunday, 21 March 2021 00:50

Ash Trees in Ireland, National Tree Week

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For all you dendrophiles, Sunday 21st of March 2021 sees the start of National Tree Week here in Ireland. So here is an image of one of the most iconic of Ireland's native trees. the ash. Ash is the most common tree found in Irish hedgerows, it grows tall to around 40 metres and its bark becomes fissured with age.…
Lesser Celandine Ficaria verna is a bright, colourful spring flower in the Irish countryside that often carpets woodlands, riverbanks and lower hedgerows between March and May; with its heart-shaped leaves and bright glossy yellow petals it is amongst the first flashes of colour after the long dark months of the Irish winter. One of the Irish countryside's stars of spring,…
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