Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Famous Trees Destroyed by Vandals: Heartbreak and History

If there is any lesson that comes to a homeowner from this article, please let it be to appreciate the life and vitality of the trees in your own back yard. An owner can become emotionally attached to a tree without even noticing – until the moment that it disappears forever. And why not? A prominent tree can become a comforting focal point of a landscape, a favorite shady spot in the sun, or a marker of personal growth.

Several trees throughout history have risen above and beyond their counterparts, and have grown to be loved and cherished by the communities in which they stand. General Sherman in California, for example, draws thousands of tourists each year to view the spectacular height and leaves an impressive memory with all who choose to come. Other symbolic living wonders have met their unfortunate fate early: at the hands of vandals.

Holy Thorn Tree

The Glastonbury Holy Thorn Tree was, at one time, one of the most celebrated pilgrimage points in Great Britain. From receiving early Christian offerings to providing sprigs for Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas dining table, to pagan worship – this tree had a very important and meaningful life to many people from all around the world. Every 100 years or so, locals took it upon themselves to transplant a clipping to replace the dying mother. Unfortunately, this historic landmark was reduced to nothing but a tree stump by vandals back in 2010.

Nevada Shoe Tree

This roadside attraction earned the love of tourists with limbs filled with dangling shoes, sneakers, and boots that swayed in the wind with color and surprising grace. Legend has it that the first pair of shoes was thrown by an arguing newlywed couple, a tradition picked up by years of travelers since. No more shoes will be thrown on this cottonwood – vandals cut it down mercilessly saddening the locals who had grown to love it.

Be aware and take good care of your own special symbolic tree – you never know when it could leave your life forever. In the meantime, practice good tree maintenance to keep it in tip-top shape!

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