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wanstead_meteo

If the oak before the ash...

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Ash is practically always last but I have seen young saplings in a sheltered spot open surprisingly early, to the extent they could beat a more mature oak nearby.
You really need one of each side by side to compare realistically, and tehy should be of a similar maturity if not age.

Ash is extremely intolerant of even slight frost so here does not open many years until well into June.
Sometimes even by longest day they are only just opening.
Oaks will start mid-May but are also prone to frost damage when the leaves are young and soft..

Ash is a curious tree having very large and rather luxuriant leaves, and yet it seems to tolerate very exposed locations for example many limestoney areas in the dales suit it well.
It's related to Olives which explains the dislike of frost.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fraxinus

The wood is very useful, in the past it was much used for various components in carts and hand tools, it is more flexible than many other species.
It is also considered the best firewood, and regrows well when coppiced.
 

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Oak and young ash currently coming out at about the same rate here this year. mature ash a quite a bit behind though. I can see both mature ash and oak from my garden, so should be a reasonably accurate comparison. The oaks range from about 150-400 years old, the ash from saplings through to very old, but not sure how old. One though has a huge girth, similar to a 400 year old oak.

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