Tree of the Year - European mountain-ash

Sorbus aucuparia

The European mountain-ash can be found both as a frequent undergrowth and as a gorgeous forest tree. People are less likely to notice mountain-ash trees growing in the trunks of other trees, where they usually wither due to the poor living conditions.

Mountain-ash berries are usually eaten during the autumn – only in a very berry-rich year do they stay on the branches for the winter and provide food for the birds even in the cold.

Healthy mountain-ash berries are actually pomes. When the berries are cut in half, the same seeded core as in the apple can be seen, only several times smaller.

The mountain-ash has been recognised by the people as a deciduous tree with great power – it is kept near houses as protection against thieves and lightning strikes.

Aasta puu 2022 on harilik pihlakas. Foto: Lennart Lennuk