The ash occurs naturally and in different species in much of Europe. However, the fraxinus excelsior is the only species that can also be found in the Netherlands. Together with the privet and the lilac, the ash belongs to the olive family. The tree likes to grow in moist and nutrient-rich soil. Furthermore, he makes few demands. Ashes do not leaf out until late spring and drop their leaves again early in the autumn. This species is special: the tree has one leaf with two smaller leaves. An anomaly discovered in England in 1789. In the young years the tree is almost columnar. Later, the tree develops a broad, upright crown that can reach a height of 15 to 18 metres. The width is about 10 meters. Striking are the dark brown, almost black buds that are clearly visible in winter.