Early in September, my classmates and I went on a tree tour led by campus arborist Mark Scott. As we walked around the academic quads on that late summer, early autumn hot afternoon, I remember feeling patient and waiting my turn as my classmates called “dibs” tree after tree. I wasn’t worried about getting my tree early so I could zone out for the rest of the tour; I was enjoying the fresh air and learning about the trees on campus. Soon, I was the only one without a tree. Mark said, “don’t worry, you’re getting one of my favorite trees!” I was excited. Mark walked me and my classmates to a tree beside the Trellis and introduced us.

Mariposa (Spanish for “butterfly”) is a ten year old Butterflies Magnolia tree. She stands about 15 feet tall with an uneven spread of about 7 feet. She is a crossbreed, her parents being Cucumber and Yulan Magnolias. She’ll grow to be about 20 feet tall with leaves 10 inches long. She has fuzzy coverings on her buds, and in the early Spring, she blooms brilliant yellow flowers.

Me and Mariposa; her leaves and fuzzy buds.

Mari and I didn’t get much time together since we met right at the end of class and I had other engagements to get to, but I knew right away we would get along, and I couldn’t wait to get to know her better.

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