Sir Isaac Newton’s apple tree felled by Storm Eunice – UKMALAYALEE

Sir Isaac Newton’s apple tree felled by Storm Eunice

Monday 21 February 2022 9:51 PM UTC

By A Staff Reporter

LONDON Feb 21: Storm Eunice which has ravaged England last Friday has knocked down a clone of “Issac Newton’s apple tree” the Cambridge University Botanic Garden has said.

According to garden curator Dr Samuel Brockington, the tree was planted in 1954 and had been standing at the Brookside entrance of the botanic garden for nearly seven decades.

This tree is said to be cloned from the same tree under which Sir Issac Newton is believed that have discovered the laws of gravity.

In a series of Tweet the garden curator Dr Samuel Brockington Tweeted:

We’ve just lost our “Newton’s Apple Tree” to Storm Eunice (gravity is such a downer, arf arf). It was planted in 1954, so has stood at the Brookside entrance for 68 years. An iconic tree, and sad loss. But what does it mean to be “Newton’s Apple Tree”?

The story of Newton’s famous discovery of universal gravitation, prompted by a falling apple in the garden of his childhood home, is apparently well supported by numerous independent accounts from contemporaries of Newton.

A single apple tree growing in his garden, a ‘Flower of Kent’ a variety, was identified as “THE tree’ and there is no doubt that possibly within 50 years of Newton’s death, an apple tree was being cherished as `the tree from which the apple fell’

The original tree from which an apple fell, leading Newton to devise his theory of gravity, is at Woolsthorpe Manor in Grantham, Lincolnshire. Even though it was blown over in a gale in the 19th Century, the tree survived and over the years has been propagated by grafting, which involves binding one of the shoots on to another sapling.

Ironically, this tree was apparently felled in a gale (much like ours) in the early half of the 19th century, souvenirs were taken and furniture made – including a famous chair. But the tree seems to have survived and appears in subsequent illustrations

Several accounts exist of the tree being clonal propagated by grafting, and grown in estates including but importantly a scion of this tree was grafted at the Fruit Research Station at East Malling – and from here most of the “Newton Apple Trees” come.

We recently had the genome of our tree sequenced by the @darwintreelife project, so remarkably our cultural heritage is now also preserved in digital sequence data. From this analysis, our tree seems identical to the scions outside @TrinCollCam and @sangerinstitute.

Finally, in anticipation of its demise, we presciently engaged in some grafting over the past three years, and have three clones. One was gifted to Lord Sainsbury @Cambridge_Uni on the occasion of his birthday, the other two are held in our reserves to be planted out.

So through the remarkable science of grafting, our scion of ‘Newton’s Apple Tree” will hopefully continue in our collections @CUBotanicGarden p.s. for latest Cambridge research on grafting see remarkable discoveries from the lab of @jmhibber

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