The Salix – click on the thumbnail to enlarge the image
The Salix Wood is situated in Gunpowder Park, near to Waltham Abbey in Essex, and is part of the Lee Valley Regional Park. The wood and surrounding area for most of the twentieth Century belonged to the Ministry of Defence and was closed to the public, but in 2000 it was acquired by the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority and so Gunpowder Park was formed. As a result of its Twentieth Century history the woodland has remained untouched for over a hundred years and as a result a process of growth and decay has continued unchanged during that period. The wood is often flooded in parts during the winter and this has enhanced this growth and decay and created an environment in which mosses and lichens have thrived.
The name Salix is derived from the generic scientific name for willow which is salix of which there are a number of Crack Willow trees growing in the wood, but it is the delicate and beautiful Silver Birch, which grows there in abundance, from which most of the images have been made. The choice of which trees to work on are based initially on their visual appeal and are discovered by my walking around the woodland and being drawn to a particular area on a tree. The attraction will be generated by such features as the colour, the surface texture and the play of light and shadow across the tree trunk or branch.