I think it’s crazy to plant something that won’t be beneficial to me for five more years, Andrew thinks it’s crazy people don’t plant trees for that reason.
I wanted to plant a tree. I’ve never done so, not one I remember anyways. Maybe as a kid I did, with my father’s hand guiding my actions, but never at my own will. I have an Environmental Studies degree, yet I’ve never planted a tree. Something’s not right about that.
It started with the tiller, one that runs erratically, pulling me forward as I try to brace my feet and contain its energy. I manage to clear out a small area, maybe six by six feet, raking away the determined grass, and ever present rocks. They don’t call it the Rocky Mountains for nothing was one of the first sayings I ever heard in my Colorado gardening career.
I emulate Andrew’s methodical actions, with his plot just next to mine. In reality they are his and Renee’s plots, their house, their land, but work is shared, as I assume the rewards will be, starting in five years, of course.
Renee brings over Jonathan, the apple tree I’ll plant. He’s already taller than me, with small green leaves, he looks healthy. Renee talks to Jonathan, she is sweet, and handles the plant like the baby it is. Together the three of us guide him, out of the pot, into the earth. He is here now, and in five years when I enjoy the fruit, I imagine we’ll have some stories to share. Hopefully he won’t be the last.