She’s a survivor

IMG_4739The day I discovered who my tree was going to be for the rest of the semester was a good day. Listening to Mark Scott talk about some of the trees was interesting, but when we got to mine, I knew it was meant to be. This tree was perfect, and I knew I had a connection with it right from the start. She is strong and has been through a lot and I knew that I would be able to learn a lot from her about life and struggle in a way that I haven’t been able took. She is a fighter. She is an Eastern Hemlock that is over 70 years old and is about 33m tall, now. Over this past summer there was a rather large storm that hit Carlisle. During this massive storm she was hit by lightning and the top few meters of her stem was severed off. She has lost her top, but is still surviving through the pain and is struggling. During this time I told her I would help her through her rehab and make sure that she stays strong and knows that she is important.

She is located in the middle of the academic campus right in front of the Ben Rush statue. She stands tall and mighty though people may look at her and talk poorly about her. She may not be the most visually attractive tree now that she lost her top, but she is still beautiful to me. She is one of the few trees on campus that has not been attacked by the Hemlock Wooly Adelgid. This parasite feeds on the trees sap and takes all of its nutrients away from it and starves the tree, thus causing it to die. My tree not only survived being decapitated but also is surviving and fight for her life against the horrible Adelgid beast. She truly is one of a kind.

Most of the time we look at nature of its beauty right away. We look at trees and admire the color of their leaves and their wide stature, and if we see one that isn’t so colorful or tall we look past it, but is this always the best thing to do. I look at my tree and don’t see a topless weak tree, but a strong tree wanting more out of life than just her 70 years. I see something that is willing to fight on to prove something of herself to the world. She is more than just a tree to me. Even though she may not be able to shade the ground as much as she used to she will get back to the point. Now she is letting the ground below her to flourish and possible new plant life is spring up with the opening of her canopy below. This tree is showing me that we can’t just look at life in an negative way, I personally consider myself a realist and would have said before that this tree has no hope, that with such a huge portion of her gone she can’t survive, but I am wrong. With care and support she can survive, as any of would be able to.

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