07 February 2012

In memory of a tree

"Here shall he see
No enemy
But winter and rough weather. "

William Shakespeare

Do you have favourite trees?

I have several. The huge beech tree that grows in the park by our house. The beech tree that grows in an open space in the middle of the forest about 5 miles from here. The tree we used to climb when we were children.

One of my favourites was the first Chilean Firebush (Embothrium coccineum) I ever saw. It grew in the grounds of the Lodge on the Isle of Eigg. After my first sight of it I even tried (unsuccessfully) to grow one in our garden. When we walked past, I would pick up fallen flowers and wear them as jewellery.

It flowered at the end of May and the beginning of June, and last summer it was flowering profusely when we passed by on a sunny day.

This year, along with many other trees on Eigg, it was a casualty of the January gales.

RIP, Chilean Firebush.

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