Start of my Tree Bucket List. Yes, Seriously.

Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.
Warren Buffet

 

It’s a weird thought to want to make a tree bucket list. Weird enough that I am a little embarrassed about this. I mean, trees are trees, right? There are literally billions of them on Earth. What makes one more special than another? You could probably find some majesty in any tree. I suppose for me though it is a combination of aesthetic, history, and a sheer will to live.  Plus, I love gardens and pretty much anything that grows in the ground. I am an avid gardener, master gardener, and I went to school and graduated with a degree in landscape architecture; plants are my thing. When doing some research for my tree bucket list, I came across this article on stumbleupon.com.  The Most Beautiful and Famous Trees on Earth.  It became my starting point for research. What beautiful trees are out there and how do I get to them?

  • The Lone Cyprus Tree in Monterey California. -According to Wikipedia, it is one of the most photographed trees in America. When I spoke about the sheer will to live or tenacity, This is the sort of thing I was referring to. I may be attributing too much to a lone tree, but it is poetic how it faces down the ocean and still, it grows. Besides Pebble Beach is gorgeous; I would like an excuse to visit as often as possible.
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Image courtesy of wikipedia.com
  • Ashdown Forest, West Sussex, EnglandThis totally makes me think of the Shire. I am a geek, and this makes me giddy.
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Image courtesy of Colin Michaelis

I know that this is not technically a single tree, but a bunch of trees. i.e., a forest. But…

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  • Rainbow Eucalyptus In Kauai, Hawaii – Please someone send me to Hawaii so I can see this tree and, um.. other reasons.
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Image courtesy of wikipedia.com

“The unique multi-hued bark is the most distinctive feature of the tree. Patches of outer bark are shed annually at different times, showing a bright green inner bark. This then darkens and matures to give blue, purple, orange and then maroon tones. The previous season’s bark peels off in strips to reveal a brightly colored new bark below. The peeling process results in vertical streaks of red, orange, green, blue, and gray. The colours of the bark are not as intense outside the tree’s native range” wikipedia.com

How cool is this? It is the Rainbow Bright of tree species.

  • Baobab Tree in Madagascar – This tree is so interesting; it stores water in its giant trunk and basically looks like something from Dr. Seuss. Some trees can store up to 32,000 gallons which they save for drought conditions.
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Image courtesy of wikipedia.com
  • The Dark Hedges in Ireland – “The Dark Hedges are an avenue of beech trees along Bregagh Road between Armoy and Stranocum in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. The trees form an atmospheric tunnel that has been used as a location in HBO‘s popular television series Game of Thrones, which has resulted in the avenue becoming a tourist attraction.” I have never seen Game of Thrones, blasphemy I know, but this looks like it could transport you to any number of fantasy novel locales. Let your imagination run wild.

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    Image courtesy of wikipedia.com
  • Dragonblood Tree – Dubbed the worlds strangest tree. I mean, seriously look at it. It also “bleeds” red sap.
    Socotra_dragon_tree
    Image courtesy of Wikipedia

    This is just touching on some of the interesting trees of the world. There is so much out there to see and to do. I’ll come up with a formal list at some point  I am sure. Plus, I have already seen a few awesome ones like the maple tree at the Japanese Garden in Portland or the Chamerops in Padua, Italy. I even have some cool pictures. What kind of trees do you like?

The Redwood Didn’t Hug Back..Jerkface

Redwoods are really gigantic trees that are not found anywhere in the desert I grew up in. I looked. All we have is Joshua trees, and they lack the oomph that redwoods have.  They only get to be about twenty feet and can look rather alien-ish scary. Imagine a field of fuzzy things from “mars” all raising their arms at you.

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See …weird alien landscape.  Found this photo at HawkedBackpacking.com. 

This is my childhood, with the occasional jaunts to Mt. Charleston for some.. gasp.. pine trees. Mt. Charleston is lovely, but it isn’t the grand arboreal forests I have heard of in California. Places with trees so large that to hug one, it would take you and six friends. I love the landscape. Desert, forest, or arctic tundra. But for some reason, I was particularly entranced and interested in this one type of tree. Call it part novelty and part appreciation.

A very good friend of my, more like a sister really, is from behind the “The Redwood Curtain.” Basically as you can guess it is a barrier of these giant trees that cuts off parts of California. No pipes, or utilities can cut through. Her and I went on a road trip a few years ago to visit with her family and I got to see these giant trees first hand.

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A redwood forest, if you look really closely you can see a few sprites waving at you. No not really.

I got out of the car and Stood surveying the prospective candidates.  My friend was like, ‘What the hell?”  then, “Yea yea pick that one.” The one I picked looked particularly snide and rough. Maybe he was having a bad eon or something. I walked over to him and hugged him. I hugged him with everything in me. I hugged him with all the magic I was hoping there was in the world brought on from a childhood reading science fiction and fantasy.

and…….

Nothing happened. What should have happened is a damn Treant comes to life and takes me on a grand adventure to save the forests or something. Instead, I came away a little sticky with a few spiderwebs stuck to my shirt. The tree may or may not have appreciated being singled out and given some hugs.  Either way, I felt better. The tree was beautiful and I was so lucky to have finally witnessed first hand.