Salty Sam’s Fun Blog for Children

Number 441

Beech Trees


Hello Everyone            


Behind Bill and Bob’s cottage, Primrose Cottage, and Emily’s cottage, Periwinkle Cottage, runs a lane called Back Lane.


The other side of this lane is the Rocky Bay Park and way off on the other side of the park is the Spooky Woods.


The trees in the woods are very tall.  Children don’t tend to go in the Spooky Woods because they are too spooky.


You can see at the edge of them though, a lot of tall beech trees.


Beech trees are easy to spot because they have such smooth grey bark, often with horizontal markings that look like scratches. The bark of the European beech is so thin it is unable to heal itself if damaged. 


The fine branches are a bit like zigzags. 


Beech trees have enormous trunks and branches when they are full-grown.  They are tall and wide. Some of them are so wide you would need several people holding hands to encircle the whole trunk. 


They look magnificent and very stately.  The oak is referred to as the king of British trees – and the beech is the queen.


lt is a tree that has been highly-prized for hundreds of years.  The ancient Celts in France worshipped the god Fagus and this name has become the botanical name for the European beech. 


The trees are so large when full-grown you can see how they could only grow in places with enough rainfall to sustain them.  They are found from southern Sweden to northern ltaly.  They are found in lreland now but are not natives there. 


Beeches quite like well-drained soils so you will find them on chalk and limestone.


They are monoecious which means that both male and female flowers grow on the same tree. 


Beech is wind pollinated.


The triangular-shaped nuts are properly called masts and were traditionally fed to pigs but mice, squirrels and birds eat them too.  People of ancient tribes would have eaten them as well.  The leaves are food for several moth caterpillars.


lf they start being browsed by deer they know this is happening by detecting the chemical compounds of the deer’s saliva and start producing bitter substances to put the deer off.  This is a good tactic to get rid of their enemies – well they can’t run away, can they!


When a lot of masts fall onto the grass in the Rocky Bay Park, they are difficult to walk on, because they can hurt your feet if you don’t have thick soles on your shoes!


These beech nuts can be roasted and ground up to make a sort of coffee substitute and oil extracted from them can be used for cooking.


The wood is useful too for making into furniture and implements, and twigs have been used for divining – that is an ancient method for finding underground water sources. 


The young trees will hold onto their dead leaves all winter as a protection against the harsh winter weather so you often see beech hedges around people’s gardens that are a copper colour in the winter.  They will provide a screen for privacy all year round and provide cover for nesting birds.


Young leaves are a light green with silky hairs but they lose their hairs and become darker green and round with a wavy edge in the summer. 


The dense canopy creates deep shade – which is one of the reasons why the Spooky Woods are so spooky!



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Thank you!


And see you again next Fun Friday!


Love and kisses



Salty Sam





Bill and Bob’s Joke of the Weekjokejoke


Bob:  Why did the children cross the playground?


Bill:  To get to the other slide!



Salty Sam © Christina Sinclair 2015

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of material from this blog without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited.

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Picture Gallery


Young beech with pointed buds


Beech trees create a high canopy of small, round, green leaves in the summer


Beech trees have smooth bark and grow to an enormous size


Autumn foliage can be lemon yellow


Foliage can be deep bronze


The forest floor


They turn from green to yellow to brown











So this week, Bill and Bob’s dad started his correspondence course to become an accountant.

He has books all over the dining table a lot of the time.

He is so determined to learn as quickly as possible, he spends all weekend reading and making notes.  Sometimes, he even does some studying in the evening after dinner, if he doesn’t feel too tired.

It isn’t until Sunday evening that he sits down to relax.

He is hitting the books, as he calls it, every chance he gets.

Bill and Bob thought that their dad going back to school was really funny.  They said that they hoped that his teacher was going to be as nice as Miss Pringle. 

Their dad said that when grown-ups went to school it wasn’t like children going to school.  The course that he was going to do was done over the Internet; he didn’t even have to sit in a classroom.

He said that, unlike them, he was pleased to get on with his homework and he did it without dilly-dallying.

Bill and Bob didn’t know what dilly-dallying meant so they went to look it up in the dictionary.

They thought it might be some kind of useful gadget that helps with homework; but they found out it basically meant messing about when you should be getting on with something – like working.

So their dad still isn’t happy at work; but working towards leaving a job that he has come to hate has made him much happier; and every evening plans are being discussed at length.



He said that he could at last see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Bill and Bob asked if the government would be able to manage without their dad doing all the important, top secret work that he does for them.

He said that they would have to like it or lump it.








Quick Quiz


Draw a column of boxes 5 across and 10 down


Write the letters BEECHTREES down the left hand side in the boxes


Put the 5 letter answers to these questions across inside the boxes


  1. to stop a car
  2. nest of a bird of prey
  3. to banish a person from a country
  4. where a judge sits to make judgments
  5. to collect lots of items
  6. an animal with a very long top lip
  7. a person who goes against authority
  8. to be really good at something
  9. to call forth
  10. to pile up






lt’s the Weekend!




This dog belongs to the farmers on the last blog post.



Using 4mm knitting needles and light brown dk yarn cast on 12 stitches

Knit 6 rows of garter stitch

Cast off 6 stitches and knit to end of row

Knit 9 rows of garter stitch

Cast on 6 stitches knit to the end of the row

Knit 5 rows of garter stitch

Cast off 7 stitches knit to the end of the row

Knit 11 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



Using 4mm knitting needles and light brown dk yarn cast on 10 stitches

Knit 6 rows of garter stitch

Cast off 6 stitches and knit to end of row

Knit 9 rows of garter stitch

Cast on 6 stitches knit to the end of the row

Knit 5 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



Using 4mm knitting needles and brown dk yarn cast on 5 stitches

Knit 34 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



  1. Using over-sew stitching and with right sides together sew back seam and centre seam of the underside pieces
  2. Sew other seams around the legs and turn the dog the right way out
  3. Stuff the body very lightly
  4. Sew around the head with wrong sides together
  5. Stuff the head and sew up the last part to be sewn at the throat
  6. Sew along the chest and stomach using over-sew stitching to pinch the dog together and make it able to stand up
  7. Sew across the centre of the ears panel to pinch it in then sew it to the top of the head
  8. Crochet 7 chains into a length of brown yarn
  9. Push one end of yarn into the chain and use the other to sew the tail to the dog
  10. Sew French knot eyes by winding some black yarn three times around your yarn needle
  11. Sew a bead on the snout to make a nose



Please note that the material on this blog is for personal use and for use in classrooms only.

It is a copyright infringement and, therefore, illegal under international law to sell items made with these patterns.

Use of the toys and projects is at your own risk.

©Christina Sinclair Designs 2015sand



Quick Quiz Answers


  1. BRAKE
  2. EYRlE
  3. EXlLE
  4. COURT
  5. HOARD
  6. TAPlR
  7. REBEL
  8. EXCEL
  9. EVOKE
  10. STACK





Embroidery Stitches

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