Dutch tree nurseries are world famous. It is therefore not surprising that the gardeners of the illustrious British bankers family, the Rothschild’s, ended up at a Dutch nursery when they urgently needed two adult red horse chestnuts (Aesculus carnea ‘Briottii’), to replace two trees which were ill. For the tree nursery of M. van den Oever & Zonen the delivery of these 25 year old trees may not have been unique, but it certainly was not an everyday job in December 2015. This was especially the case for the logistical challenge: the transportation to the estate of the Rothschild’s in North-London, with trees between 6 to 7 meters long and with a clod diameter of 1.5 meter.
For The Green City, Van den Oever answered some questions:
‘M. van den Oever delivered two mature red horse chestnuts at the estate of the London banking family, the Rothschild’s. How did this come about? Did you receive a call from them?
‘Members of the Rothschild family probably live in larger houses in the area of London, and they sought special trees for their gardens. Through a designer / gardener they were linked to an English nursery. This nursery asked us for two heavy red horse chestnuts with the size of 60-70. The Latin name is Aesculul carnea ‘Briotti’. This tree fits beautifully in larger gardens, parks and estates. Older trees often form a nice dense ovoid crown and reach a height of about 15 meters. The beautiful orange to red inflorescence in May is a delight for any nature lover.’
How were the trees transported to London? Did you have the opportunity to take a look at the estate?
‘The trees were transported with a dense canopy trailer to England. The branches in the crowns were tied together by a biodegradable rope to avoid branch breakage. The trees were rooted with a wired rootball. These are standardly equipped with a biodegradable jute and digestible wire baskets. This material will vanish in the ground after planting the tree. It is always good to monitor certain projects and provide reliable maintenance advice. Unfortunately we did not yet have this opportunity on this particular property.
Do you often have such famous customers? Where can we find other trees from M. van Oever & Zonen for example?
‘We regularly sell trees to gardeners and landscapers who have VIP clients. Over the years, there have been planted a lot of trees in gardens coming from M. van den Oever & Zonen. Not long ago we provided trees to a famous former professional football player. We sell a relatively large number of trees to municipalities in the Netherlands and abroad. A few years ago we provided the Cathedral of Saint Michel with a large number of Gleditisia Triacanthos ‘Skyline’ for their green area in the centre of Brussel. During the years we also have built a good relation with the city of The Hague. On the street of Alkemadelaan and along the railway line between The Hague and Rijswijk we have planted a large number of Tilia cordata ‘Green Spire’. At the moment, there are some nice projects for large leisure and amusement parks. In 2017 we will start delivering trees to Disneyland Paris’
Where would you like to see a Mr. van den Oever tree in the future?
‘Since 1792 we have been engaged with many different types of customers. We deliver to municipalities, provinces, landscape architects and individuals. We see ourselves as “Environment improvers”! Every place that is decorated with our green benefits the earth and thus to man. Green has the ability to improve the atmosphere and this gives our team a lot of satisfaction, regardless of the location where it is planted. Of course it would be even more fun when you can provide the Royal Family with a garden.