01 October 2015

A celebration of trees: September: Once were trees

This month’s celebration of trees is a little different – it’s about death.

This dead tree in Roath Park became an art installation
 for a few weeks
Okay, that’s a little dramatic. It’s about trees that are now physically dead but live on in the ways we still use them. There are hundreds of uses for dead trees, of course – they're all around us in our daily lives. As I sit writing this, I can cast an eye around my little flat and see wood in furniture and shelving, doors and window sills, kitchen utensils and books.

However, prompted by the various artworks I’ve discovered in the parks of Cardiff, I want to show you some trees that have been put to more creative uses, as statues and sculptures, as benches and as play features.

Expect for the tree on the right, the objects in my photographs can all be found in Cardiff's Bute Park, which has both a sculpture trail, where artists have frequently used dead trees from within the park to create beautiful artworks, and a discovery play trail, to introduce children to local historical and ecological themes.

Unfortunately, the information on the Bute Park website is incomplete – the interactive map doesn’t actually show all the sculptures and there are no specific details of the artworks or their creators. Hopefully, these omissions will be rectified in the near future. In the meantime, it’s a beautiful park to wander around and discover these resurrected trees for yourself.

The frog on a log was originally the frog and the fly but the fly has flown ... or been swallowed!

A knight flies on an eagle
Apple trees perhaps? Children love to clamber on this one
Sinuous dancers, on the left, and a fairy, a dog and a lizard, on the right
Is it a platypus? Is it a dinosaur? No, it’s a stag beetle.
A serpent snaking through the wood chips
A jolly green tree man



Do you love trees? Then you might like to look over my previous months’ celebrations of trees by clicking on the following links: January (one particular favourite),
 February (about lime avenues), March (on the subject of forests), April (about the greening of the trees in the British springtime), May (on the New Zealand pohutukawa), June (about some of Auckland’s most notable trees), July (honouring ten wondrous trees from my international travels), and August (following pathways through forests and woodlands).