The Corylus avellana ‘Red Majestic’ has grown in the last month — not much but enough that its head now rises above the wooden rail that marks the back edge of the border.
|The colour of the leaves reminds me of Heuchera ‘Palace Purple.’|
I chose this tree because of the colour of the leaves, and I continue to find them a wonderful contrast to the blue spruce and the sharp green of amsonia. Unfortunately, to see this colour contrast you have to stand at the edge of bank, a precarious position that no one of firm mind would choose.
|The leaves rise up on spindly stems, which makes them resemble heuchera even more.|
Following a tree takes on a different meaning when you look around the garden more widely. This tree striding across a rock in the woods seems to be leading its followers somewhere special.
|A friend who does calligraphy told me that the tree resembles
the Chinese character for ‘man.
Is he heading for the woods…
|Tall trees cast long shadows on ferns in the woods at Glen Villa.|
Or the open fields, where a single tree is waiting to greet him?
|Early autumn colours trees in the Eastern Townships of Quebec.|
I doubt that he will take the straight and narrow path.
|Christmas trees in the making.|
Whatever destination I can imagine for him, I’d rather see him return to the earth than become hard as rock.
|Petrified wood in the Egyptian desert.|
I feel a particular affection for my striding tree-man: he inspired the art installation Abenaki Walking as well as the painted tree trunks that once crossed the fields.
|Abenaki Walkers, 2011|
For a few more years he will remain as he is, a natural form that can be seen as a man or a dead tree or an inspiration for some other person’s dream. He is plain and simple and I hope my praise won’t make him blush.
|I saw this piece by Sam Keith on the grounds of Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania.
It is called “In the Shadow of Abracadabra.’