Our tree of the Week has been selected by Ham&High gardening correspondent Ruth Pavey who spotted it while attending the Muswell Hill Horticultural Society's autumn show.

Old Horse Chestnut North Bank, 28, Pages Lane, Muswell Hill.

"In this century, newly spreading leaf miners and fungal problems have weakened and disfigured horse chestnut trees, so that the huge old conker tree hidden in a corner of the gardens of North Bank now looks in trouble. Its girth, however, is still a magnificent sight and there is even beauty in the bracket fungus that is part of its host’s decline.

Ham & High: Giant Horse Chestnut tree in the grounds of North bank Muswell HillGiant Horse Chestnut tree in the grounds of North bank Muswell Hill (Image: © Nigel Sutton)

Many mature tree trunks are less massive than the former branch of this horse chestnut, that used to jut out at right angles from its trunk. That the tree could ever have sustained its weight is actually more surprising than that it finally fell into the undergrowth below. Serious pruning was carried out some years ago to help keep this grand hulk of a tree going. It looks its best in late spring, with its new leaves as fresh and green as ever."