Today we went for a walk.  This is an example of the crazy things I have got planned for my month long sabbatical.  It was nice.  We may well do it again.

One of the first things we saw was large fallen tree, a beech perhaps but difficult to positively identify without scrabbling and a festive excess of cheese and pringles has rendered this impossible.  It had crashed into another on its unfortunate descent, felling a further substantial specimen as it toppled.   We need more trees not less, I thought.  Although not surprised, the high winds and wet soil often add up to unstable footings, the sight did make me feel a bit sad.

Then, as we wandered around the garden where OH used to work, we came across plants that he had put in more than 7 years ago.  A three metre high Leptospermum grandiflorum, grown from seed I collected from Marwood Hill Gardens, a Crinodendron hookerianum now a fine looking large specimen, a dozen fruit trees all maturing well, a silver birch past the lanky teenage stage, amongst many others.  And I thought, a good job.   In our own way, as gardeners, we help to renew, to replant and to take up the slack.  We may not be as good as Mother Nature, but we do our best.

Trees fall, it is the nature of things.  If left to their own devices they may well rejuvenate from the rootball, any dead will provide a new ecosystem for all manner of birds and beasties, fungi and fauna, and ultimately will feed the soil it lies upon.  All is not lost.  Often a tragedy is not as fruitless as it first appears.

Which brings me in a very round about, the taxi driver from hell, way to the year ahead, which is shuffling in the wings as I type.   We must all do what we can to find positives amongst the many negatives.  To keep on doing what we can to make this a better world.  To spread the love.  To renew and replant, to take up the slack.  All is not lost.  I am hoping so anyway.

And I wish you all a fabulous 2020, filled with fulfilment and joy and of course love.  And if you feel so inclined, get out there and plant some things.


22 thoughts on “Renewal

  1. We Gardener’s are by nature optimistic. I think we are fortunate to live in a free democracy compared to other parts of the world. The benefits of gardens to both health and the environment are at last beginning to be realised, we just need to keep prodding our leaders in the right direction 😀😀😀

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  2. If we could all get one tree planted by the end of the year, somewhere, if not in our own gardens, that would be a lot of trees. As you say, we need more not less. Your blogs have brought joy to me all year; thank you and all the best for next year.


  3. Happy new year to you too Gill. I look forward to reading more of your always entertaining and thoughtful posts in 2020.


      1. Thank you, Gill. We are quite safe, but the news and images from the coast are horrendous and there doesn’t seem to be much respite, certainly no rain in the near future.


  4. Lovely post Gill.
    My sister died suddenly and unexpectedly just before Christmas, which left me very much in the doldrums, but now I’ve decided to plant a new border in memory of her….. so life will go on.
    I wish you a very Happy New Year.
    Maggie xc

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  5. Your poor uprooted tree does look like a beech. Unfortunately, they are very shallow rooted. Yes, planting things is what keeps us sane . I planted a Cedar of Lebanon in my previous, much larger garden. I like to think of people sitting in its shade 100 years from now. Here, in this garden, honey fungus rampages everywhere and kills off older more vulnerable trees, so I plant trees hoping for a few years rather than for posterity .

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  6. In a few days, I am supposed to be planting a minimum of 52 street trees in Los Angeles. (I will not be able to attend this year.) I so enjoy adding trees to the urban forests of Los Angeles and San Jose. However, there are now MANY more trees in both cities there were naturally. San Jose is naturally a chaparral, with only a few trees scattered about. Except for those in the two minor riparian zones, the others were almost exclusively coast live oak and valley oak. Los Angeles is more like desert than chaparral. There were even fewer trees there. As much as I like nature, I like the unnatural trees more, at least in cities. Here in the redwood forests, harvesting a few of the superfluous trunks would actually be beneficial to the crowded forest. The trees that were clear cut harvested more than a century ago regenerated with multiple trunks, which are now competing for limited space.

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