Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Crab apple flowers

I've had this on-going relationship with crab apple trees since my childhood.  In the front yard of my paternal grandparent's house was a crab apple tree.  It was tall and thin and I would often wrap my arms around it when I was a little girl (and I'm drawing memories that go way back to the age of 3 or so).  I remember fat, round crab apple fruits, about the size of a jack ball that hung heavy on the limbs.  The fruits would litter the front yard, which interferred with my grandfather cutting the grass or my boy cousins playing touch football.

That tree was the focal part of the front yard.  I would guess that others thought warmly of the tree, too. I remember for my grandparents 50th anniversay there was a special framed portrait/clock that included individual photos of my grandparents flanking a photo of that crab apple tree in the middle, with the thin gold clock hands originating at the branching part of the tree. Tiny little tics encircled the tree, which represented each of the 12 hours of the day.

A few years later, late 1980's/early 1990's the tree was struck by lightning, bring down the front portion of the limbs and leaving a very bad scar.  It was large and quite dark.  I remember being sad about it. Without its full rounded crown of leaves in the spring and autumn, it just seemed to droop on one-side. It looked like it was slumped over, like a family-member in declining health, feeling sad and awaiting death.  Eventually, the decision was made to cut it down, because it was bad off afterall. I gasped with shock and lost when I saw missing one day.

Sigh....but in all of that, I never really paid attention to the tree in spring, so the memory of flowers isn't as salient for me. And in my fuzzy memory, I don't remember the flowers of that tree in my grandparents' yard being this pink or this colorful.  For some reason, I recall the flowers being white or blush. But now that it's gone, I can't confirm it.

Do you have any nostalgic memories of trees from your childhood?  Do you hold some wild spaces or things as special friends?


Unknown said...

I enjoyed reading your tree post. It brought back memories of trees that I was attached to as a kid and there were many. One acacia tree was our hideout when my siblings and I needed a break from our parents. We used to fight over who got the prime seat on the tree - a wide and high branch (to see over the fence). The tree had little yellow button type flowers that exploded into powder if you touched them. While visiting grandparents in India, we used to love this old Neem tree (probably over 100 years old). It was so hot and lying in the cool shade of the tree and reading a book was great. The last time I visited, the tree had been cut. I never found out why but the place looked so empty where the tree had been.

Unknown said...

Trees have always stirred positive emotions for me, especially in the spring .They do remind me of my childhood, riding my bike along a treelined street and stopping to pick blossoms or smell them. I still get a rush of seratonin as I see the magnolia, cherry, crabapple, redbud and dogwood trees in bloom around this time of the year.I'm happy to see that my son has inherited my love of and appreciation for the magic and majesty of trees too. Thanks for sharing this and for the shout out!

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