Saturday, April 25, 2015

And the Ginkgo Trees

Dear John,
 
It was good to ponder Funkhouser last night. Becky mentioned the ginkgo trees in front of it, how beautiful they were every fall. It was one of the highlights of the campus. So tonight I'm remembering gingko trees, and wondering if they'd grow this far north.
 
They were nice shade trees in the summer and breathtaking in the fall. They turned a yellow more vivid than any other tree I've ever seen. And the leaves held their color for a long time after falling. There were so many ginkgo trees on campus! We celebrated them every fall with our own little Ginkgo Festival. How we all loved those trees!
 
I'd never heard of them before I started college. One fall I was telling Mama about them, how beautiful they were and what unusually-shaped leaves they had. She thought I was exaggerating, so I mailed her an envelope full of fallen ginkgo leaves and she fell in love with them. She had those leaves matted on olive green velvet and framed, and they hung on the den wall until the house was closed in 2004. Stop - do the math - they hung there thirty years. And they had lost amazingly little color in that time. I still have them; that's one thing I could never, ever get rid of.
 
Tonight I remember walking the campus with you in the fall, looking at the beautiful ginkgo trees and kicking through the leaves on the ground. I can remember what it smelled like I really need to look them up and see if they will grow in this zone. If they will, I'd probably have to get them on line. And I have no idea what one would cost. But it's worth looking into. I remember that they grow fast and live forever - that's a good combination. Maybe I'll get me a ginkgo tree or two.
 
Remembering autumns past,
Joan.

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