Beneath the Shade of My Branches
By: Stephanie Benney
I never get a Saturday to myself, but today I finally did – so I went walking. When I lived in the area, I would spend hours at North Park. It was my therapy. Anytime I was dealing with a problem or going through a rough patch in my life, I would find solace and comfort in the trees. Today I finally got to do it again.
It was one of those days where there was not a cloud in sight and the sky was a hypnotic blue. Half of the time I’d walk around with my face looking up, taking in all of the surroundings, in particular the trees.
For years upon years and seasons upon seasons, I’d get lost in the texture of the bark and how the veins were like roads on a map, each leading to a new, special destination. I’d study the foliage and the various hues depending upon the time of year. But my favorite thing to look at, was the shape and outline of the trees against the watercolored background.
To me, the architecture of a tree is one of the most beautiful things. It makes me wonder about how many seasons it’s weathered, what history it’s lived through, how many admirers it has, how many problems and secrets it’s been told and how expansive it’s roots are.
Since we are coming up on Earth Day, it is nice to give organizations a “shout out” for their fine work in preserving our dear Mother Earth and all that inhabits her. Tree Pittsburgh is a local, environmental organization “dedicated to enhancing the City’s vitality by restoring and protecting City trees”. Their vision “is to be a leader in creating a healthy, attractive and safe urban forest by inspiring and engaging citizens to maintain, plant and protect trees. Taking care of our trees will improve our quality of life by maximizing the substantial environmental, social and economical benefits that trees provide.”
There are so many ways you can become an active member of Tree Pittsburgh. If you are a tree hugger and lover, stop out for “Community Tree Lover’s Open House” and share a tree story. Maybe you had a favorite tree you’d hide when you were a child. Maybe a tree is where you shared your first kiss.
If you prefer to be a little more hands on, join the nearly 1,000 Pittsburgh residents greening the ‘Burgh and become a “tree tender”. You will get an education on tree biology, planting and maintenance. You will literally be “greening” your community.
Tree Pittsburgh is doing some great things to get you, the people of Pittsburgh involved in the preservation, planting and caring of trees in your community. They are now in the process of developing an “Urban Forest Master Plan” and they need your input. Please visit www.treepittsburgh.org and let them know what you think.
Some of the upcoming events you don’t want to miss:
Tree Care – South Side Slopes
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Tree Planting – South Side Trail
Friday April 13th, 2012
Tree Care – Highland Park
Tuesday, April 17th, 2012
Urban Forest Film Festival
Wednesday, April 18th, 2012
So go ahead….show a tree some love and give it a hug!
Stephanie Benney is a “Sustainable Visionary” and also the new Pittsburgh Representative for Fuzed Marketing, where she helps companies increase their brand presence. email@example.com