Blackthorn from Wittenham

By Charlie Beckett

March 30, 2012

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Category: run

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This blackthorn was grown from a sucker sapling taken from a hedge on the slopes of Wittenham Clumps, otherwise known as the Sinodun Hlls, by the Thames in Oxfordshire.

There is an Iron Age fort on top of one of the hills where our sons used to play when we lived in Oxford. One of my favourite painters, Paul Nash chose them as a subject, partly for their striking form, sticking out like breasts on the Thames Valley plain, but also because of the almost mystic atmosphere of the place. It’s within sight of the Didcot Power Station and the M40 but feels ageless.

Technically, this is not on the Heath, but at the beginning of my run in my front garden. When it blooms it has the most wonderful creamy petals and bight, lime green stamen and leaves.

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