Hang in There
“If you feel like you’re losing everything,
Remember that trees lose their leaves every year
And they still stand tall and wait for better things to come.”
Well now, if that isn’t a poignant and relevant quote for these times, I don’t know what is. Doesn’t it feel like 2020 has been a never-ending amusement park ride? Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride has nothing on 2020! I saw a little video the other day of the opening animation from the 1980’s cartoon the Jetsons. You know the one where George Jetson exclaims, “Jane, stop this crazy thing?!” If you’re anything like me, you wake up every day just waiting for “I got you babe” to play through the clock radio so “Groundhog Day” can begin yet again. Thankfully, I haven’t yet smashed my iPhone like Bill Murray does to his alarm clock but I can’t say I haven’t been tempted.
Covid19 (not 1-18), has turned all of our lives upside down. Most reading this are old enough to remember 9-11. Old enough to remember the despair we all felt, the feeling that this world was falling apart at the seams. But somehow by the grace of God we made it through. Some might even say we became a stronger nation for it. If nothing else, the resurgence of patriotism was a welcome side effect of a national tragedy. Covid though, is a different animal. An enemy that we can’t see and have not yet been able to figure out. I am, however, hopeful that our best and brightest will figure it out and at the end of this detour in the road we once again emerge stronger, smarter, more health conscious and more unified.
Do you know what hasn’t stopped from COVID though? Trees! Neither the desire for them nor their growth has slowed down. When first we were hit with the pandemic, we all immediately assumed our spring which had been off to a solid start would come to a grinding halt. We evacuated our office, sent everyone who didn’t work in the field home and hoped for the best. Despite our best attempt at prognostication, the phone continued to ring and the orders kept coming. You know why? Because you can’t stop spring. NOT EVEN COVID CAN STOP SPRING!
You know who else doesn’t care about the Novel Coronavirus? Trees! That’s who! We’re currently on our second flush with no signs that these babies are going to stop growing anytime soon. Sure, the late spring frost did a number on a few species. We’re still in the midst of that science experiment, waiting to see if some tender species will ever push out of their flash freeze damage. But otherwise, oaks are putting on caliper at breakneck speed, maples are sending out yet another round of new leaves and you can practically watch the green giants grow right before your very eyes. Spend a day at the nursery and you can almost forget there is a crisis happening in the world. Save the employees working near one another in masks, you might never know! We have shifted our collective energies from digging and loading and are now focused on pruning, mowing, spraying in preparation for a busy fall.
We are hopeful for fall. I think it’s important to remain hopeful and to believe that better days can be ahead. With that said, reality is there is a lot that can happen between now and then. There are many more months before we have a vaccine, who knows what the crazy weather will do and let’s not forget the election. Murder hornets, out of cycle cicadas, meth gators! What possible thing could be next? But have hope friends, we too shall come out on the other side of all of these things with stronger roots, and more flexible branches.
Cheers my friends,
Ronda Roemmelt Sneider, CPH
ISA Certified Arborist MA-5274A
Ruppert Nurseries Sales Manager/Mid Atlantic Sales