Recent storms have destroyed an ancient family tree planted by Maude Bird at Strawberry Hill

Kellie BalaamAlbany Advertiser
Chloe Bird and volunteer co-ordinator at Strawberry Hill Judy Williams.
Camera IconChloe Bird and volunteer co-ordinator at Strawberry Hill Judy Williams. Credit: Supplied

Last week’s wild weather has felled a poplar tree, uprooting a 130-year-old family connection.

Destructive winds and rain damaged properties, flooded backyards and toppled trees, including a poplar at Strawberry Hill planted by Maude Bird in the 1890s.

Maude and Francis Bird bought the farm in 1889 from the estate of Sir Richard and Lady Ann Spencer.

Granddaughter Chloe Bird visited to inspect the damage.

“It is such a shame to lose this connection with my grandmother,” Ms Bird said.

National Trust staff believe the wind direction during the storm may have caused the tree’s demise.

Poplars have shallow root systems but adapt to conditions.

The National Trust staff said with winds generally coming from the south-west, the tree would have developed structures to support it over the years.

But it might have struggled during the recent onslaught of south-easterly winds.

Planted close to the creek running through Strawberry Hill, the ground often became boggy after heavy rain.

National Trust volunteers have been working with Aboriginal rangers to upgrade the area.

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