The beautiful Speulder Forest in the Veluwe region of Holland is an
enchanting world of dancing beeches and melodious birdsong.
Due to the allelopathic properties of the trees and so little light
passing through the dense canopy, virtually nothing grows on the
forest floor, which is littered with six inches of spent leaves, spiny
beechnut husks and dead and down wood. An occasional totem
pole-like standing dead trunk is festooned with large shelf fungi
which are decomposing the wood. I hiked miles of idyllic trails
there in early May, when the delicate, membraneous bright
spring-green leaves are just unfurling.