The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC) is a nationwide initiative created to mark the Platinum Jubilee to grow a greener UK and create a legacy in honour of The Queen’s leadership of the nation, which will benefit future generations.
In October 2022, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Hampshire, Nigel Atkinson Esq visited Whitchurch Silk Mill to plant a crab apple tree in the grounds as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy. Following the wishes of the QGC Patron, His Majesty, the Mill’s tree has been planted in memoriam to honour Her Majesty. Our tree has been added to the QGC map, a digital record of the Jubilee tree planting projects across the United Kingdom.
The crab apple is a native ancestor of the cultivated apple and can live up to 100 years. The name comes from the ‘crabbed’ appearance created by gnarled and twisted limbs and spines which often appear on it’s twigs. The leaves are food for many species of caterpillars, including the eyed hawk-moth, green pug, Chinese character and pale tussock. The long flowering season of the blossoms provides an important source of early pollen and nectar source for insects, particularly bees, and the fruit is eaten by birds. It was said that if you throw the pips of the crab apple into the fire while saying the name of your love, the love is true if the pips explode and apple wood was burned by the Celts during fertility rites and festivals!
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