A number of nature being images have been crafted into a white poplar tree who has been around since at least the 1860s, when ownership of this 1700s Pennsylvania farm transferred to the Barnard family, who have lived here ever since. They are Quaker farmers, part of the rich heritage of the Brandywine Valley.
By the time a tree is 150 years old, it’s lived through several changes of human ownership of the property it lives on and its own standing on that property will have changed. In this case, this tree has gone from being part of a front lawn sweep to living in a side storage area. The farm has gone from being a usual country farm with cows and vegetables to being one of the outstanding apple orchards of the area, with an indoor farm stand on premises.
The Barnards settled in this area in 1726, originally living across the street and purchasing this orchard in 1862. It is one of the few three century farms in the area. You can read more about this orchard here.
I headed out to the orchard farm stand to pick up some just-picked apples…and this tree called to me; it wanted to be photographed. Owner Lewis Barnard graciously allowed me to do so.
The tree is part of a small circle of old trees, each bearing images of gnomes. This is a gnome’s enclave – always a sign of good people living on a piece of land, who the gnomes are assisting with their presence. The presence of gnomes means the earth is being tended to strongly and well, and prosperity and right living is the result.
There is also a long-time existing image of cattle spirit, the image of a young human girl with her pet, and some sort of small nature being with thin horns. I did a short reel of this tree, which you can see on Instagram or on Facebook at Nature Spirits Around the World.