Spalted Beech

The cut surfaces of the stumps, left when some of our big beech trees were recently felled in Charlton Down, show evidence of the fungus which caused their demise. The abstract figuring of dark lines and patches running through the trunk denotes the extent of the infection, and this natural abstract patterning is much prized by wood turners and sculptors for its decorative quality, transforming the simplest of bowls or platters into a work of art. [The Dansel Gallery in Abbotsbury, for example, stocks items made from this type of spalted beech.] These pictures were taken after heavy rain which soaked into the wood and enhanced the colours.

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