“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
– Chinese proverb
As many homeowners will tell you, trees are a beautiful addition to any manicured property, but they’re not without their share of maintenance.
There’s raking in the fall, dormant pruning in the winter and tree fertilization and insect control in the spring and summer. While certainly not the most laborious of household chores, it’s easy to label trees as just another line item on an ever growing to-do-list.
But what if the trees on your property – your trees – meant something infinitely more. What if they weren’t inherited from a builder or the previous homeowner? What if they weren’t randomly purchased from a garden center or tree farm to fill a bare spot in your yard?
What if you received a tree as a gift? And one of the best reasons for doing so is in commemoration a life event – a milestone.
Like the new father, who was gifted a red leaf maple tree from his parents to commemorate the birth of his daughter. He envisions the tree growing tall and strong enough to hang a swing from its branches when his daughter is seven or eight years old. He imagines picnicking under its shade and jumping in leaf piles in the fall. And when she’s all grown up and moved far away, he’ll look at that old tree and remember the day he planted it and why.
Or the young woman, whose mother recently passed away from a debilitating illness, who was gifted a cherry blossom tree from some of her mother’s beloved friends. While death often signifies and ending, this hearty, ever-blooming tree serves as a constant reminder of the beauty that remains. And each spring, as their colorful flowers explode and their fragrance fills the air, she remembers how much her mother loved the cherry blossoms and how much she loved her.
Lucy Larcom, an American teacher, poet and author, once said, “He who plants a tree, plants hope.” And that is perhaps the greatest reason for gifting a tree – to plant a little hope in the heart of the recipient. Hope for what’s imaginable and hope for better days ahead.
So, the next time you find yourself searching online for a gift for someone special, think about gifting them a tree. They’re incredibly unique, they’re beneficial to the environment and they won’t wind up in a landfill or at a local garage sale when their usefulness has worn out.
And if you need another reason, who couldn’t use to plant a little hope for the future.