Notable Trees in Fovant

Pine (Pinus)

Weymouth Pine (Pinus strobus)
(Click on grid reference to find exact position)

A decision was made in April 2013 to fell this large Weymouth pine (or white pine) which was situated within the Conservation Area at The Gables in Fovant. It was a huge imposing tree approximately 150 years old visible from the road and the footpath. These trees can grow to be about 200 years old in their native habitat.

This tree was situated on a slope near the footpath leaning towards the High Street. There were concerns that it could fall and cause serious damage to people or property. Although the tree will have had a huge root base, a parking space was cut out of the slope about 9 years ago only about 4 metres from the base of the tree which may well have caused damage to the root system reducing the support on that side of the tree. This could also have left the roots open to damaging pathogens which may only be apparent once the tree has been felled.

Possible solutions:
A Tree Preservation Order could have been put on the tree and it could have been retained. If the tree had been left as it was, it would probably have lived for another 20 - 30 years but it would have continued to be a serious cause of concern.

A large branch could have been removed on the side nearest the road which would have substantially reduced the weight which was causing it to lean. However, it was a very large branch approximately 2' thick which would have left a huge scar and reduced the life of the tree to about another 10 years.

Weymouth pines are not native to this country and were imported to Europe around the beginning of the 18th Century from North America. Now the treee has been removed, it could provide an opportunity to plant another native tree better suited to this position.

Wild Cat Pine
(Click on grid reference to find exact position)

Girth 2.77m - measured on 14 October 2010.

Probably a Lodgepole Pine (Pinus contorta) but known by some locally as Wild Cat Pine after the lone pine on Wild Cat Island in Arthur Ransome's book. Apparently Dr Clay, the third generation of his family to be the resident doctor of Fovant, paid £5 to prevent this tree being felled in 1960s.

The tree is surrounded mostly by beech trees. One side of the tree is in a very poor state. It looks as though it may have been hit by lightning. It has been stripped of bark on the bad side and there are a lot of dead branches and a good deal of dead wood on the ground beneath.