This week's ABC Wednesday is brought to you by the letter T for . . .
I may not exactly be a tree-hugger, but I am certainly a lover of trees. I've always lived in older homes with plenty of mature trees, and I can't imagine living anywhere that didn't have a yard full of shade.
A visit during Spring Fling to Rich's Foxwillow Pines in the northern suburbs of Chicago introduced me to a tree I am now coveting. This variegated beech tree growing in front of the large spruce (or was it a pine?) has pink-tinged leaves that absolutely glow in the sunlight. I only wish I had taken a close-up of the leaves. This tree is going to be added to my ever-growing plant "wish list."
If you were to ask me, though, what my favorite tree is, I would probably answer the majestic oak, the grand old man of my yard which I have featured many times here. But in spring, I might say it's the redbuds with their fluorescent lavender blooms that tell me spring has finally arrived. Of course, a little later in spring, the flowering crabapples are magnificent . . .
While it may not be my absolute favorite, however, a tree that I've grown to appreciate more and more in the past year is one of the smallest trees on our property, a white flowering crabapple.
In the Spring green leaves appear first, then tiny pink buds appear.
By early May, the buds open into a cascade of white flowers. Notice the shape of the tree. Perhaps one of the reasons I have grown to love it more is that it was rather shapeless when we moved here until my husband decided to prune it to make it easier to mow around and under. While he was pruning it for convenience, the end result makes for a pleasing umbrella shape.
Although there is no colorful foliage in the Fall, red berries appear, and when the leaves drop late in the season, this crab is covered with sprays of red, looking almost like a holly decoration for the holidays.
Oh, did I forget a season? In the Summer, the tree doesn't stand out in the landscape other than its shape, but its small size is inviting . . .
This crabapple really is a tree for all the seasons.
To see more ABC posts today, you may click here. Or to read about the Garden Bloggers' Spring Fling, scroll below.