My tree

I don’t take many pictures of my front door, or the tree next to it. It was just “always there”, until it changed.

Earlier this year, I had a bushy palm tree by my front door. It stood there for ten years, shedding palm fronds everywhere, but I liked it because it felt tropical in an otherwise rainy and bleak landscape. A bit pina colada in the land of tea.

Then all its leaves fell off,

and my palm tree turned into a



Half of the leaves have dropped

It happened painfully.¬†First a few fell off, then most of them, then all but two, and finally, a palm tree with just one leaf…

The same thing happened with a couple of neighbours’ trees, and the tree surgeon came and chopped them to stumps. I planted a plum tree to cheer myself up, and a wisteria, but I didn’t plant another palm tree. This one had my children’s swing on it. My cat loved it. Even I – having ignored it for a decade – liked it.

The base had suffered a bit of bark damage so I padded it with moss in the warm weather, watered it, and surrounded it with lumps of granite to protect it. It was all I could think to do.

Then I waited.

No leaves

“It’s dead,” said a couple of people.

Months passed. Little fragments of bark fell to the ground. The skies turned grey. I stopped looking at it, but declined an offer to cut it down.

“It might recover,” I said, “sometimes miracles happen.” But I still didn’t look at it.

And then,


in the bright October sunshine,



which, closer up, looks like this:



My tree is alive.



Leave a reply