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The ash tree-tadpole, the king of the wooded swamp!

Nature Frédéric - assistant base de données et TIC By Frédéric - assistant base de données et TIC, the 17 May 2019

Today, a spotlight on one of the emblematic trees of Green Venice: the tadpole ash tree!

Baptized locally " fragne " or " cabourne " when its wood is hollow, he can live more than a century. Originally, it is crashed " been in hiding ". The "been in hiding", the relic of the first arrangements of the wet swamp, consists of woody linear mounds, flanked by ditches. The ash tree is cut in tadpole in 1 m. at the level of arms to facilitate the work; up in the boat in period of floods. Further to the setting-up of the cooperative dairies in the XIXth century, some "been in hiding" are converted in grazed meadows.

The tree was pollarded the winter, all 5 in 7 years (all 12 in 15 years today with the mechanization), in 2 m. of the ground to prevent the ruminants from coming to nibble at the first spring rejections; its sheets being a good feed for the cows which are crazy about it! The boughs, bound in bundles of sticks by a stalk of willow, served as firewood for thatched cottages and baker's oven, were marginally used for the manufacturing of sleeves of tools, household cleaning staff, fishing tackle …

At present, 80 % of the trees of the Swamp from Poitou are of the ash tree, that is 400.000 feet roots of which strengthen the banks of channels! But, this old raised weft suffers from the erosion and is threatened since 2016 by the chalarose, a mushroom causing the withering of sheets; where from the implementation of a " plan landscape " with the selection of six species: the common oak which suits in the peaty circles, the black poplar formerly exploited in the Swamp to build skeletons, rural elm resisting the graphiose, the white willow not giving a firewood but retained for its esthetic quality, the rural maple and the common charm.




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