Bonnie The Birch
Submitted by Susan Black
I walk south on Dogwood Street several times a week and pass by a tree that seems to be calling out for help. I’ve named her Bonnie The Birch.
During the summer, her little leaves flutter in the wind, calling attention to herself, but no one seems to notice her. Instinctively, when the season changes, she releases her accessories and they fall to the ground around her. In the winter months she stands naked but brave, ready for the spring sun to rebirth her foliage.
She stands a meager four feet tall, stunted I suspect, from lack of water. She stands wedged between two huge logs and is strangled by tall grass and the encroaching bully known as the yellow broom plant.
At her roots, there is discarded debris and one of her branches has a plastic cup dangling on the end of it. That day I stepped up to her and removed the unwanted ornament from her outstretched limb.
The sweet thing is located on the northwest corner of the neighbouring property and it is obvious from her appearance that she is need of water. I’m not an arborist, but if this tree is a birch, as I suspect, then she has shallow roots, which need watering during dry periods. I look at her closely and decide that I will try to find her owner and ask if I can adopt her. So far, however, the property owner has not returned my calls. Patiently, Bonnie remains steadfast.
My story was accepted into the Story Tree category in a competition hosted by Greenways Land Trust in Campbell River. They let me know that I had won a tree book. I'm so excited!