The rain has continued, making a free format approach to daily blog posts on doing something wild for nature more of a challenge. In theory, I did work with soil again but perhaps weeding in gravel and between paving slabs doesn’t really count. It certainly doesn't sound very connecting to nature like - I got wet hair for the cause too ;-)
In blog planning terms, I could be sitting with ideas ready for a rainy day blog but that’s not the way I wanted to roll with this. It had to be something I felt on the day. It took an evening drive just before dark and today’s connection to nature came to me – trees, great big deciduous mature ones sitting like living statues in the middle of fields.
This connection goes way back to being a teenager and sitting in a particular field drawing a particular deciduous tree. I’m sure I sketched it many times through the seasons. I can remember vividly being in awe of the beauty and character of this tree – an oak I believe it was.
Appreciating this tree’s great value of food, shelter and homes to a huge diversity of wildlife species never occurred to me at the time. I simply loved the form of this tree, the shaping of its branches and its scale. I would lose hours sitting recording it in my sketchbook in my own amateur way. I felt a very real connection at the time too. I guess now, this was my first true connection to the natural world.
Sketchbook now long gone, perhaps the tree has too, it was a photo search tonight for an image to support how the form of a mature tree captured me in my teenage years and still does to this day. I knew exactly what image I’d choose.
Taken back in February 2009 on a woodland walk at Cambo (to see their fantastic celebration of snowdrops) the roots in the tree above absolutely captivated me. You can easily see why. Perhaps I should try sketching this :-)
Taking a good guess, I can’t be the only one who has a connection to a tree when they were growing up. I can’t be the only one in awe of what age brings to a tree either. It would be great if you could share your tree stories in a comment :-)
This post was published by Shirley for shirls gardenwatch in June 2016.