Certainly I did not expect to post glorious blooms at the start of the new year, but neither did I imagine the havoc we would see around us. Mother nature brought us an ice storm while we were away traveling. The damage to trees will be with us for a good long time and the cleanup will be expensive. Presently we are waiting for a limb to be removed from a power line. Fortunately we have kind neighbors who cleared the worst of the damage so that we could access our lane.
As a child I remember people talking to me about trees and how they could last for hundreds of years. There were the giant sequoias, the solid oaks, even the elms in my home in New York State. In France and Italy we saw gorgeous olive trees that were centuries old.
Since moving to the farm here in Ontario, we see large trees uprooted and fall each year. Cedars, spruce, and maples are among them. We even knew the man who planted many of them over 80 years ago. The signature willow at the entrance to our property has seen huge branches fall almost yearly, yet it has survived handsomely despite severe pruning. This year, I am unsure about its survival. Time will tell.
The good news is that we have steadily planted shrubs and young trees along the creek and in other locations. They have grown well. They pose less danger than the hundred year old spruces or the silver maples that crash or splinter in ice storms. And so, as we age, those hundred year old trees that awed us as children do not seem so very old to us now! Like the old barns that tumble in our landscape, the lost trees harmed by storms are a great sadness. Hearing them snap in a storm is a terrible sound indeed.