Out of the closet...

punoczka at inforamp.net punoczka at inforamp.net
Thu Dec 11 23:00:37 EST 1997

>Paul Morgan wrote:
>> I have a confession to make...I hugged a tree this weekend.  It was a
>> non-commercial species smack dab in between a larger sugar maple and yellow
>> birch.  I realize that love is blind but I stared wistfully at the striated
>> bark, pondering the unknown figure of the wood beneath, its serene strength
>> evident only in the fibrous refusal of a broken branch to part from the
>> stem.  Years before I had re-handled an old shovel with a sapling stem of a
>> like tree and it remains faithful to this day.  I should have killed this
>> tree but I didn't.  Being shade tolerant, it will probably outlast me
>> although never exceed a foot in diameter.  I don't know why I have such a
>> soft spot for this tree, but I do.  Ostrya virginiana, eastern hophornbeam.
>> --  Paul
>> =============================================
>>                        Morgan Forest Products
>>                               - Since 2006 -
>>     "Real Wood - Because Life is too Long for Plastic"
>> =============================================

The real reason you did not cut it is probably because ironwood can be
so infernally tough and hard that it takes forever to cut.

It is alright to hug trees although you must put up with sap, gum, 
and assorted other debris and dirt off the bark.

It is a lot easier just to talk to trees:-
they are good listeners and never argue.

Ironwood is "non-commercial" only because there is not much of it
around and the few living trees tend to be very dispersed among many
other species and trees.

You could solve that problem by planting a few acres of them
and giving them a little bit of tlc (weeding, fertilizing, and so on).
A few acres of big, straight ironwoods would be quite valuable.  
However your grandchildren will be harvesting the crop. 
Think of it as an endowment for them. 

Perhaps you could get yourself a hundred acres or two of derelict
pasture land and plant five acres of ironwood, locust, mulberry, and
so on.
Your grandchildren would then be able to corner the world supply 
of rare temperate hardwoods fifty years from now.

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