The Millennium Forests : School Program (2000-2002)
OUR NATIVE TREES
12,000 years ago, Ireland was a very different place than it is today. The whole country was covered in snow and ice. There were only a few places where plants could grow and no people lived here. Then the weather changed, and all the snow and ice began to melt. At this time Ireland was joined to the rest of Europe. Plants, animals and people were able to travel easily over landbridges that connected the different countries. Eventually, all the ice melted (except the bits at the North and South Poles) and the landbridges were flooded. Ireland became on island.
Our native trees are the trees that reached here before we were separated from the rest of Europe. These trees are suited to our weather and will grow naturally from seeds in the forests. Our most common native trees include oak, ash, hazel, birch, rowan and willow. Even though some trees have been brought here from other countries and have been here for a long time, they are not native. Beech, sycamore and horse chestnut are some of these trees.