Plant-Lore

Collecting the folklore and uses of plants

Oak before ash

Posted on by royvickery |

003The rhyme
If the oak is out before the ash, we shall surely have a splash,
If the ash is out before the oak, we shall surely have a soak
is widely known throughout the British Isles, and implies that if oak (Quercus)trees come into leaf before ash (Fraxinus excelsior) trees the summer will be dry, whereas if the ash comes into leaf first a wet summer is foretold.
Observers from southern England to mid Scotland noted that in 2011, after what was in many parts of the country a dry winter and spring, ash trees produced their leaves well after oak trees were already in leaf. Thus a dry summer is predicted.

Image: ash buds, Woldingham, Surrey, March 2015.

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