Cambridge Flooding: Willow In The Water

This is a view across the river Cam. On the far side the river has burst its banks and reached almost up the boathouses.

Tamara and I walk along this side of the river sometimes, and we discuss how it is that the branches of the trees are trimmed off so neatly. Tamara says it must be people who trim them. I say that the trees on the Common are trimmed by cows, so perhaps some animals do that here. It’s unlikely though because there is no access for cows. So she is probably right.

(Photographed with an iPhone 8).


  1. Tamara says:

    I’m taken aback and sad to see the flooding, David. I hope the tree does not get too waterlogged. Wait, can that happen to a tree?

    As far as how the trees are so trimmed and straight, yes: I do think they are professionally trimmed by humans.

    But good on any cows who manage such a professional-looking topiary-like manicure, eh?? 🐄

    Actually, normally I prefer unmanicured trees but with those weeping willows by the water’s edge, it is pretty to see them with such straight edges all about. Odd when I think about it as usually I distinctly prefer the “natural” look.


    1. I am thinking of the weeping willows on the River Cam near the bridge on Bridge Street. Those are trimmed by swans, and do not have the precise trim that these in the photo have. If these are trimmed by cows then then you are right that they truly have tremendous powers of straight cutting.


    2. During winter they can withstand being waterlogged for months. Once Spring comes, they are at risk if they are waterlogged because the roots are deprived of oxygen.


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