Even the strongest, most resilient tree…

Trees are solid, unmoving, resilient, and seemingly ever present.

Trees ask little of us, just a little water and a little support to begin, yet they serve us so well, and for so long.

Trees are however, in equal measures delicate and vulnerable.

When pushed trees can flex and adapt, often taking care of their own injuries.

However, when taken beyond their limits, and in broken, splintered and torn states; they disappear, usually.

A tree somehow finds a way to continue, and long after its apparent end.

In its withering state a tree’s tissue once more becomes productive, giving nourishment and shelter to others.

Even when dismembered, ground-out and cleared away, a tree often still leaves an indelible imprint on the landscape.

A space in the canopy, a hollow in the ground, or a telltale fungus growing from a buried stem.

It’s inevitable then that even the strongest, most resilient tree can succumb in time, but where will exists, that seemingly ever present tree can still be replaced by new wood.

New wood with fair weather seasons grows to cut a new silhouette, bear fresh fruit, and leak oxygen for future generations to breathe.

Trees therefore have their own circle of life, inextricably linked with countless organisms even after breathing their last.

The presence of a tree is so real, so valuable and giving, yet its departure so sudden, and so difficult to accept.

An impossible space to fill were it not for the keenest of new wood looking to make its mark.

New wood looking to take its share of nourishment from the soil enriched by decades of decayed foliage, from years of investment by its forebear.

New trees do, in time erase the ghosts of landscape past, bringing their own spirit to the place.

Trees: cherish them until they’re gone, then after they’re gone, and nurture those new shoots.

Trees, remarkable things…

Gary Webb

6.2.19

Silhouette of the canopy of a London Plane tree.
A Stately London Plane

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