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London Plane

Richard Bell’s Wild West Yorkshire nature diary Friday, 6th June 2008

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THIS HYBRID tree can cope well with conditions in towns.

Its bark flakes off in patches, an adaptation that is said to help it cope with the sooty pollution of city streets.

Its seeds, which open up as fluffy parachutes, hang in lychee-like bobbles from the branches.

The fold in this fallen leaf looked to me as if it had been fashioned deliberately as a home by some insect. If so, it was no longer occupied.

This tiny fungus was growing on the grass beneath the tree. You probably can’t see on this scale but alternate gills bifurcate - imagine a bicycle wheel where half the spokes are Y-shaped - to fill the circular cap.