The Giving Tree

My MARtians, I hope this blog finds you all well and safe. Here in the northeast, we have had some horrible nasty weather, from 60 mile per hour winds last weekend to massive amounts of trees down and power outages this week due to the nor’easter.  And although my home Rosebrook Gardens is safe without any damage, it’s very sad to see that my neighbors’ old oak tree was not so lucky: a massive tree limb came crashing down, taking down power lines down with it.

This majestic 100 plus-year-old tree just could not take the heavy pressures of the dense, heavy snow.  Already full of buds for the spring, they gave the snow even more surface area to collect upon–and add weight. This sad sight fills us all with grief. To see this tree laid across the street was like being at a funeral. If this tree could talk about its history and journey! We had lots of time to ponder it, since it (and the power lines) lay across the street, blocking traffic in or out, so we all found ourselves taking Uber to get to any appointments and/or places where we could warm up and charge up our electronics.

Truth be told, we were only out of power for just over 24 hours and the tree branches have now been chopped to smaller pieces so we can now access the street, so the worse is over. Now begins the clean-up.

Growing up there was a wonderful book I loved called The Giving Tree, by Shel Silverstein. It told a story of a wonderful tree that continues to give to a little boy even after you’d think it has nothing left to offer. Living on this street for over 20 years and always loving and admiring the old oak tree from across the street, I can honestly tell you this tree is loved by all; like the Giving Tree in the book it gave not just to me but to everyone who ever visited our little street. In the spring it would display a burst of buds announcing spring has arrived, in the summer the shade would provide protection from the harsh sun, and in the winter the sculptural fan of branches stood tall and proud for all to admire and appreciate.

I love trees and I have always felt that whenever it’s possible we should plant one, and to teach the importance of trees to the overall balance and visual interest in the garden. Nothing is more compelling than a loved and cherished tree on your property.  Sometimes we inherit one, and sometimes we plant them; either way, if cared for they will last through our whole lives and hopefully tell a story to the next generation.

So although we are sad, we are blessed as the trunk of the tree is fine. Despite the loss of a large limb, it will not sacrifice the integrity of the tree or its life. It’s just sad and perhaps it’s Mother Nature’s way of saying it’s time to shed some old wood in preparation for new growth.

So my MARtians give a tree a hug today; pause and appreciate the beauty they offer and the important reasons why they are here.