categoryZTrees Trees List 
categoryZBroadleaf Broadleaf List 
categoryZDeciduous Deciduous List 

ASH

Fraxinus excelsior

Olive Family [Oleaceae]

month8mar month8march month8apr month8april month8may

category
category8Trees
 
category
category8Broadleaf
 
category
category8Deciduous
 
status
statusZnative
 

flower
flower8brown
 
inner
inner8red
 
petals
petalsZ0
 
type
typeZclustered
 
stem
stem8round
 
sex
sexZbisexual
or
sex
sexZmale
or
sex
sexZfemale
or

18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
Common Ash is one of the largest hedgerow trees [apart from the larger elms which have suffered badly during Dutch Elm disease. Dutch Elm disease is caused by one of three differing ascomycete fungi spread by 3 differing bark beetles from the sub-family Scolytinae which is in the Curculionidae family. The three species invaded differing continents]. However, your Author digresses: this is the Ash page and Dutch Elm disease affects only Elm trees! Ash grows to a height of 40m.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Each ash tree can be either male, female or sometimes bisexual. This is a male tree with male flowers.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The male flowers are in tight and opposite bunches at intervals along the ends of newer branches.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Flowers in opposite irregular bunches.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The male flowers are in tight clumps on pale green shoots.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Even the pale green branches are branched with a myriad of small purple male flowers, some with a smaller red anther looking like a microminiature red-tipped matchstick. Your Author assumes that the brown rough-haired objects with two chocolate-brown 'cups' either side in the centre are as-yet unopened capsules containing the myriad of developing anthers.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Ash certainly makes sure it has an ample supply of male flowers!


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The bark of flowering twigs is not ruckled like the older main trunks of Ash trees are. The black 'capsules' in the image have yet to burst open and allow their developing anthers to escape into fresh air (as much as fresh air as can be expected from being next to a major main dual carriageway; the first purpose-built inter-city highway to be built in the UK (opened 1934) - linking Salford to Liverpool - which has been widened several times over during its (still-extant) existence).


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The flower pods near the end of the twig are still to open.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Although it looks like two side-branches have been carefully sawn off with a junior hacksaw, this is how it grows.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. First the black-green casings open revealing some hairy fawn-coloured objects which also open to spurt out a growing and branching raceme of purple anthers.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The coconut-like pale-brown hairs shrouding a pod before opening fully.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Residual remnants of the 'coconut-like' hairs. Two red stamens stand proud on their long green-white filaments.


7th June 2014, Gait Barrows, South Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The leaves sprawling over the ground growing in a gryke between limestone paving. The leaves only appear after the flowers have appeared and will still be there when the flowers have gone.


7th June 2014, Gait Barrows, South Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The pinnate leaves have between 8 to 12 opposite leaflets plus a terminal leaflet at the end. The elliptical to narrowly-elliptical leaflets are coarsely and somewhat irregularly toothed on their edge.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The main trunks, covered in Ivy only the recently blown over/down branch has an ivy-free stem.


18th April 2018, East Lancs Rd, Walkden, Gtr M/cr. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Lying flat near the ground, probably blown over by the very strong winds experienced in the last 2 years.


2nd Aug 2016, nr Higher Poynton, Macclesfield Canal, Cheshire. Photo: © RWD
 Male. Your Author is not quite sure why these leaves are so dark-green. Maybe they are of a cultivar?


2nd Aug 2016, nr Higher Poynton, Macclesfield Canal, Cheshire. Photo: © RWD
 Male. They also seem to have less toothed leaf-edges.


2nd Aug 2016, nr Higher Poynton, Macclesfield Canal, Cheshire. Photo: © RWD
 Male. But their fruit pods are very similar - apart from the side branches which are still attached to the fruity tip.


2nd Aug 2016, nr Higher Poynton, Macclesfield Canal, Cheshire. Photo: © RWD
 Male. The as-yet un-opened fruit pod looking more like a slightly bisymmetrical tip of a philips screwdriver.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. A more typical growth form of an Ash tree.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. The bark has many ribs looking like 're-joined rivulets' running down the tree.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. A view of the canopy from beneath the tree.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. The pinnate leaves and the clumps of dangling seed pods which do not allow much light to pass through them (unlike the leaves).


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. The leaves and the densely clustered dangling seed pods.


12th July 2008, a plantation, Newchurch, IoW. Photo: © RWD
 Female. More mature seed pods with slightly twisted pods.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. A leaf hangs down between a dangling clump of pods.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. At first the pods have a short extension of the midrib which runs down the centre of the pods which falls off more mature pods. This is displaying the obverse side of the leaflets, which are slightly hairy around the midrib near the stem.


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. Lets twist again, like they did last summer...


29th May 2018, old rly line, Bamford, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
 Female. The seed pods dangle on the ends of fairly long stalks branching off from several sturdier stalks near the woody parts.




GOLDEN ASH?
(A CULTIVATED SPECIES)

Fraxinus excelsior 'Jaspidea'

[This appears to have longer buds than Ash itself. Also, the bark is perhaps a golden shade? Golden Ash was first introduced to Britain in the late 1870's but is now found increasingly on streets and in parks because of its the spectacular golden leaves in Autumn]

31st March 2017, Brynrefail, Llanberis, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Also, the bark is perhaps a golden shade commensurate with it being Golden Ash(?). Also, the end unopened floret cases are much longer than those of Common Ash, which is also perhaps a characteristic of Golden Ash. The end of a twig before all the male florets escape from their dark-brown 'prisons'. Lateral buds are in opposite pairs, it says in your Authors book, so maybe these two, which are at the moment 'dead-end' branches, will start to grow into side branches(?)


31st March 2017, Brynrefail, Llanberis, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Two other as-yet unopened 'capsules' containing developing male flowers lower down the stem. Two of the features on this specimen are quite asymmetrically placed on this example! Maybe one side grew faster than the other...


Not to be semantically confused with : Ash-leaf Maple (Acer negundo) [another tree with similar name]

Easily mistaken for : Narrow-leaved Ash (Fraxinus angustifolia)

Some similarities to : Golden Ash (Fraxinus excelsior 'Jaspidea') a horticultural variation of Ash.

Ash is most often the commonest tree, especially where there is damp ground or alkaline rich soils. It occurs throughout the British Isles except the far North of Scotland. It is unisexual with male or with female flowers or it can be bisexual with both male and female flowers occurring on the same tree.


  Fraxinus excelsior  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Oleaceae  

Distribution
 family8Olive family8Oleaceae
 BSBI maps
genus8Fraxinus
Fraxinus
(Ashes)

ASH

Fraxinus excelsior

Olive Family [Oleaceae]