Remember last December when I couldn’t find a Maple to save my life, or rather to save me from my ignorance? December Maple Hunt . Well, this year, we are taking a proactive look at Maples, starting in the spring, and through each season til December again.
Instead of just walking by them, I gave us a challenge to stand, in front of the tree, without speaking a word – for 5 minutes. We’d been walking quietly for quite some time, so I didn’t think much of it. They boys had a crazy hard time keeping silent, but we made a game of it and got through.
After the 5 minutes, we shared what new observations we’ve seen. Flowers, the trunk, the curl of the leaves, how the wind can move just one leave to make it move in circles while not touching the leaves around it, and many other details. The photo below is where this tree had been cut down, it now takes up a corner of the yard, just from these small branches – branching out.
One favorite for me, was finding a small batch of violas beneath the tree.
It can take as little as 60 seconds to stop and observe an object. I urge you to use silence in the time you spend outside. It can take as long as 15 minutes for the birds and animals to start moving again after you’ve entered their environment. It takes time in observation to know when an object has changed in a later visit. Silence. It’s a good thing with Tree Study!