Sunday, February 12, 2012
It’s all about the Trees
We have been in some pretty little towns lately, walking and peering at front yards and porches. If you look at the pictures Patty has been taking, it is all about the trees. From the erect, wide spreading Live Oaks along the Suwannee at White Springs, or wind twisted ones in St Mary’s to the tangled, twisted “enchanted forest” on Cumberland Island, the trees are endlessly fascinating.
In Pensacola last summer we learned that the “Marine Oaks” were so important a resource for wooden shipbuilding that the fate of the colonies and later the course of the civil war was thought to depend on holding these tracts. The strong, close grained limbs naturally forming arcs and curves were ready made for the ribs of ships. We learned on Cumberland that shipwrights carried templates to the forest and cut limbs to match; They kept sketches and measurements in notebooks and sent crews back to harvest perfectly shaped pieces.
Even today the trees perfect the setting of houses perhaps formed from the same wood.