If Trees Could Talk- Wicklow's Trees and Woodlands over Four Centuries

Old Sweet Chestnut tree (John Wesley) at Rosanna

If trees could talk more would be known about the influences that have shaped the landscape and the rich arboreal heritage we now enjoy in this great county, the Garden of Ireland. But they don’t; and so in trying to unravel the past, and how it evolved, we rely largely for clues from archaeology, pollen and tephra analysis, ecological surveys, place names, documentary records and here say – often influenced by political bias.

In this publication, the author explores the evidence of former woodland cover and the various tree planting initiatives carried out in CountyWicklow between the 17th and 20th Centuries. The uses made of timber and the profitability of the industry during the 18th and 19th centuries are also discussed and include a review of documentary material related to the Watson-Wentworth-Fitzwilliam estate based at Coolattin near Shillelagh in the south of the county. The progression of the industry over the period is referenced to the overall social and political evolution of the county and related issues

If Trees Could Talk is published by Coford and available to purchase through Government Publications Office, Dublin.

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