Coppiced tree

Newly Coppiced Tree

Last Monday, May 16, I vowed to kill my long-languishing Meyer Lemon tree.

And then I didn’t. Instead, I agreed to give the tree another chance after my husband confessed that he “loved that tree” (news to me!). Several readers also wrote notes of protest. The weirdest reason not to carry out my plan came from my daughter, Sara, who called to tell me that May 16 is “National Love a Tree Day.” Who thinks this stuff up?

I granted the tree clemency. Its reprieve included adding more soil, applying different fertilizer and coppicing the poor thing. I really like the word “coppice.” It sounds so medieval, and it is. Here’ what it means:

Coppicing is an English term for a traditional method of woodland management which takes advantage of the fact that many trees make new growth from the stump or roots if cut down….Coppicing maintains trees at a juvenile stage and a regularly coppiced tree will never die of old age.

Who knew there exists a non-sci-fi method by which a living thing reverts to its juvenile stage and will never die of old age. On the other hand, who wants to be a juvenile again or, on the other hand, live forever?

Have a good week.



About Alexis

Alexis Rankin Popik, author of Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, is an award-winning short story writer whose work has appeared in The Berkshire Review and Potpourri Magazine. She has penned numerous articles about local history that have been published in Connecticut Explored and the University of Connecticut School of Law and The Hartford Seminary publications. A former union organizer, Popik traveled the country educating shipyard workers about health and safety and founded a labor-management health plan before turning to writing fiction full-time. She lives with her husband in New England.
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