Reappearing trees

Shortly after the Lasry Center for Bioscience opened, two elms were planted on either side of the walkway leading to the front door (visible in the 2007 image from Googlemaps, below). It was a good idea, but one of the elms promptly died and for years it was not replaced (it is gone in the second image, from 2011). Now, thanks to our former student Dimitris Floudas, the pair has been restored (sort of). Several years ago, Dimitris germinated seed from the surviving elm and set about to grow a bonsai. However, he later landed a post-doc in Sweden, making it necessary to find a local home for the elm and his other plants (he left me a cactus, perhaps thinking that would be the only plant that could survive my neglect—what does this say about our mentoring relationship?). With the approval of the Biology Department and the assistance of several bemused but indulgent members of Clark’s Physical Plant, we planted Dimitris’s elm in the autumn, on the same spot where the former elm had been. Then we had the snowiest winter on record. Physical Plant kindly installed a plywood tent to protect the tree, which completely disappeared under the drifts. When the snow melted the plywood tent was gone, but miraculously the elm was intact, and it seems to be doing well (see the third photo). At this time, the asymmetry of the two trees is almost comical, but trees live a long time and in thirty or forty years we may have a fine pair of American elms with vase-shaped crowns framing our front entrance.

2007

2007

2011

2011

May 4, 2015

May 4, 2015

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