A holy tree worshipped throughout history
Oak is one of the most characteristic wood species. The tall and very thick trunk, rough bark and long lobed leaves are unmistakable. Its seeds — the smooth acorns with their cup-like structure – are also easily recognised. The oak’s silhouette, leaves and acorns are used as symbols by organisations all over the world.
The fact that oaks can live so long perhaps contributes to them being regarded as holy, and worshipped by the Greeks, the Celts, the Vikings and many others. Oak was a symbol for Zeus, King of the Greek Gods, Jupiter, the Roman equivalent, and Thor, Viking God of Thunder. The word “oak” is derived from the Norse word igja, which means “veneration”.
Kährs shares the landscape with the oldest oak in Sweden
The Rumskulla Oak, the oldest oak tree in Sweden, is situated 130km north of Kährs’ head office. This tree is a thousand years old and has a circumference of nearly 14m. The Rumskulla Oak became protected in 1924.
Since the mid-19th century, Swedish law has stated that for every oak tree felled, at least two new ones must be planted. Even now, there are rules on how many acorns can be picked; you’re allowed to pick only as many acorns as can fill a mitten.