Wednesday, June 17, 2015

A natural born tree right in my own backyard!

As some of my readers may have noticed, I spend a lot of time these days among trees, paying attention to trees, cutting back invasive trees to save native trees, etc.

And one thing that I came to realize is that at least in an area like Chicagoland, humans tightly control the reproduction of trees. 

I live on a lovely tree-lined street. Big trees - 100 ft tall or more. Maples, oaks, ash....but there are no baby trees, except for smallish trees that the city plants when they have to remove diseased trees (such as all the ash trees, under assault from ash borers).

It makes me sad to think of how impoverished my immediate surroundings are, how unnatural. We don't even let trees - majestic living things that make our lives possible, that live through many of our own generations - live out natural life cycles. 

In fact, I have come to accept that trees planted singly along streets to enhance our lives are really just ornaments. If "a man is not an island" then certainly a tree is not a forest. And very few trees live naturally outside of forests of many, many trees.

Well, enough of sadness. Veva and I were sitting on our patio last week, enjoying the (finally) warm weather and our lovely garden (thanks to Veva), when she pointed out something truly wonderful:

Can you see it? We planted the birch trees years ago. They are now 40 feet tall, but nestled in between? A natural born baby birch tree! Can't see it? Here maybe this will help:

I feel so much better now. The (minimal) wildness of our garden (as in: no grass) made it possible for a birch seed to take hold and grow. A tree that humans did not plant and hopefully will allow to grow to maturity.

Humans love to debate things like "Do plants feel?" Of course, it is terribly difficult for us to imagine such a thing - because the way that plants would think and feel would be so different from us. So we will likely never really be able to answer the question.

Which means it would make a lot more sense to err on the side of caution and assume that trees and plants and creatures do feel, do think in their own way, do take joy in life.

And watching this natural born tree grow, it is certainly easy to believe that it is joyful. I sure am.


Oracle-Weekly said...

Impressed with your thoughts. I once thought to take one sapling (naturally grown) for my first bonsai plant, somehow I could not do that. After 15 years or so, I saw that full grown tree and I am happy I did not.

iudith said...

So nice :)
I can only imagine how wonderful could be to sit in your wild garden,
the small area where you do have the freedom to give nature all its rights :):)

You ask whether trees do feel ?

Well ... probably yes, because that's the difference between life and non-life.

But who does really care ?
Do people care at all about ANY feelings of anyone, be it human or other being ?

Each one of us should act in such a manner as to satisfy his own conscience.
Fighting to convince the others of your truth is usually meant to fail ....

Humans only understand the language of force and power, and, those who should decide
about pretty anything already know how to manipulate the opposite interests
of the different human groups, so that their will will never represent a danger
for the "position" of anyone ...

Long live to your baby birch tree :):)

Nature and life are more powerful than humans, and, differently from the humans,
they will probably last until we will not be here any more :):)

Best Regards,

Nelson said...

Hey Steven. Would you care to share a picture of the back yard? I hate grass, and want to get rid od it somehow, but had not found a proper alternative.