Thursday, July 26, 2012

Tree Day

Australians don't tend to over-complicate nomenclature. "Oh look, it's a brown snake! What'll we call it? Brown snake? Well, that makes sense to me..." 

Brown snake
(image from here)

"So we've built this flash bridge. It's over the Sydney Harbour..."

The Sydney Harbour Bridge
(image from here)

And don't forget "red belly black snakes", "red back spiders" and "the Great Sandy Desert." Yup, we're just a regular font of imagination, down here. (This makes me feel better about Peanut naming her horse "Horse" and her fish "Fish". It's in her blood.)

So when our delightful northern cousins decided to have Arbour Day celebrations, I can just imagine the confusion that generated Down Under. "Arbour Day? What the flaming heck is THAT? Oh, planting trees? Yeah, we'll be in on that... but only if we can call it Tree Day."  And so it came to pass.

It's National Tree Day this week - Friday for schools, Sunday for the rest of us. 

Peanut and Bug helped me pick out our tree yesterday. We're going to plant it in the front yard, if it ever stops raining. I considered registering our site as an official location (you get a free Lorax mustache kit!) but I think I'd rather just keep it as a family tradition. Also, I can't be bothered - I've too much laundry to be posting letters. 

It will be nice to leave something behind on our street when we move on at the end of the year. Perhaps when we are passing through Canberra again one day we can drop in and visit it. 

There is still time for you to go out and grab a tree if you want to join in. Ours was only $15 - not much, really, for a lifetime of shade, beauty, and oxygen production. So go on, hug the earth - stick a tree in it. 


  1. Having lived and worked with Austrialians for many years, one of the things I loved about them was their clarity of communication. Oh yes and their exquisite use of profanity! but this was in the mining industry which I accept may not be quite the same for the rest of Australians. ;-)

  2. Oonagh...:-) That also stretches to the South African mining industry :-D
    I love the tree planting idea. Post us a phodie. It was quite sad that we had to remove a few trees from our garden when we moved in, but they where so, so neglected.
    You're in Canberra! Wave a Hi to my uni-friend Heleen who's also there. Whom, you won't find amongst the thousands others, but a virtual wave will do ;-)
    (You'll note I'm completely ignoring any reference to snakes and spiders...I' lived in mortal fear for eight months in Brisbane and had a fireman-sized canister of spider-killer at the ready.

  3. The Americans are not completely immune to Obvious Names... Rocky mountains? Painted desert? Grand canyon? We're a bit more obsessive about it though.

    I'm not sure we have anywhere we can put a tree at the moment :( We have however propped up an existing shrub so it can reach the light and actually grow.. that counts for something right?

  4. Go forth and plant trees! As I am no longer fit and able to do it myself, I give all your commenting readers permission to plant one for me.

  5. As we have a wood heater I am always getting us to plant trees to replace those we burn...but it is a nice thing to do with kids as they can watch something growing with them. I have ten oak tree seedlings to go in (currently sulking in pots) as soon as we have our own place and I don't have to leave them behind (like I did with all my fruit trees when we moved here :( although my friend appreciated the instant orchard).