20 NOVEMBER 1926, Page 15

Country Life and Sport

OurstnE one of the loveliest country houses I know, in a hamlet famous in literature, stands one of the biggest tulip trees in England. The girth of the bossy trunk is large and it almost rivals in height the tall elms beyond it. So the grief was great when in the summer of 1925 it began to show symptoms of ill-health. Those of us who are fond of trees and love to watch " the tricks of art that builders learned of trees," are alert to observe any sign of weakness. We look at the leaves and their colour as we look on the complexion of our friends. The tulip tree was unquestionably, as they say, in failing health. The doctors were called in, a con- sultation was held ; and of several remedies suggested it was at length decided—on the authority of a specialist from Oxford—to proceed to forcible feeding. Considerable, holes were dug at intervals in a circle round the tree and were filled with special tonic foods. Everyone was a little afraid that the malady of the old, the very old tulip tree, was age, the hardest of all maladies to cure ; but if that diagnosis was true, the Oxford specialist is in possession of the elixir of youth. For the tree returned gorgeous foliage this summer. If it showed old age, it proclaimed " a green old age." No sign of illness or any anaemia could be detected. The leaves came at the proper season and held their place Jill the green juices flowed back into the twigs against next spring and left the proper autumnal yellows.