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I'm a "Tree Hugger"

Updated on October 21, 2014

Wall Sticker - great for family room, bedroom or even the carport!

Trees and Me

My nom de plume for several decades has been Cercis or redbud which I appropriated from the North American redbud tree (Cercis Canadensis). I love it when friends begin notes, emails and letters with Dear Redbud! For many reasons, I became keen on these trees during family trips throughout southern OH. They dot the woods and hillsides of southern OH with pale purple blossoms in early spring.

One of my earliest memories of growing up in Cleveland, OH, between the ages of two to four, is of my father and me along Euclid Creek on an overgrown path leading toward Lake Erie. I talk; he listens. I ask questions; he answers. There are enormous willow trees growing along the creek banks and they fascinate me. We actually return to this place many times, always heading for the willows.

Now, the location of a modern and well-used Cleveland Metroparks marina, the willows are long-gone from the creek banks. However, for me, they are close as my memory.

Neighborhood trees continued to communicate with me as long as I lived in Cleveland. I watched as slowly but surely as the Norway maples (Acer platanoides), planted by Cleveland as street trees, pushed up roots into the tree lawns between the sidewalks and street sometimes leaving large distensions and sometimes gaping holes in both street and sidewalk. I learned about invasive species, although I did not know to call it that, by observation.

A row of Ohio buckeyes (Aesculus glabra) along a cross street several blocks from home kept me supplied with buckeyes which were skewered and strung into necklaces. I learned by waiting for ripe buckeyes about flowering and fruiting schedules. I repeatedly tried to transplant redbuds (Cercis Canadensis) from trips south of Cleveland into our tiny backyard. They never got very big and I learned about natural habitat and growing conditions.


The "Lorax" speaks for the trees

My Epiphany Moment

It was at Miami of Ohio, as I gazed through my dorm window one afternoon, that I had an epiphany moment. I heard people chanting what sounded to me like Latin. There was a ring of students standing around the tree outside my room in the old Anderson dorm. In addition, yes, they were chanting the scientific name of the tree in unison in Latin! It was not difficult to find out that a botany course freed those chanting students for walking around campus, while I was suffering with chemistry in my room.

The rest, as the saying goes, is history. I changed my major from chemistry to botany, started to learn about trees and other plants, and never looked back. Trees were now my dear friends. The University currently boasts self-guided walking tree tours that comprise three distinct campus areas and identify 150 plus native and ornamental trees. And if desired you can keep up with me and my trees on my Treehugger blog.

I went on to live, study, teach, write and photograph, and garden in western Massachusetts for over fifty years. I continue to look out for trees wherever I might travel. I find old friends that take me back to my Ohio and Massachusetts days and make new acquaintances. I learn as much about them as possible, but really do not feel comfortable until they become new friends. In addition, I fight with words for the old ones like those in Stadium Woods, on the campus of Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA.

I want to share my enthusiasm, appreciation and knowledge with readers. For like the Lorax, I want to speak for the trees.

Trees in Motion

I frequently tramped eight or ten miles through the deepest snow to keep an appointment with a beech-tree, or a yellow birch, or an old acquaintance among the pines.

— Henry David Thoreau

A Beautiful and Helpful Book

Trees everywhere!

Some trees of the world - Examples of what I love; my own photos

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Pines of Rome; Stone pine (Pinus pinea); Natural mature shape and form;  Grown in many places for their edible pine nuts; Rome.Stone pine (Pinus pinea); Native to the Mediterranean region; Used extensively for landscaping; Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.Edible fig (Ficus sp.) in Roanoke, VA; Approximately 30-feet-high.Slightly mature fig fruit; Roanoke, VAMature Japanese red maple Acer palmatum); So. Deerfield, MAWhite redbud (Cercis canadensis Alba); Seuss Memorial Park, Springfield, MAAmerican basswood (Tilia americana); Confederate cemetery, Charlottesville, VAAtlas cedar (Cedrus atlantica) and Norway spruce (Picea abies); Confederate cemetery, Charlottesville, VANearly mature olive fruit; Assisi, Italy; October-November.Olive tree, natural bonzai, growing from crack in pavement; Assisi, Italy
Pines of Rome; Stone pine (Pinus pinea); Natural mature shape and form;  Grown in many places for their edible pine nuts; Rome.
Pines of Rome; Stone pine (Pinus pinea); Natural mature shape and form; Grown in many places for their edible pine nuts; Rome.
Stone pine (Pinus pinea); Native to the Mediterranean region; Used extensively for landscaping; Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.
Stone pine (Pinus pinea); Native to the Mediterranean region; Used extensively for landscaping; Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.
Edible fig (Ficus sp.) in Roanoke, VA; Approximately 30-feet-high.
Edible fig (Ficus sp.) in Roanoke, VA; Approximately 30-feet-high.
Slightly mature fig fruit; Roanoke, VA
Slightly mature fig fruit; Roanoke, VA
Mature Japanese red maple Acer palmatum); So. Deerfield, MA
Mature Japanese red maple Acer palmatum); So. Deerfield, MA
White redbud (Cercis canadensis Alba); Seuss Memorial Park, Springfield, MA
White redbud (Cercis canadensis Alba); Seuss Memorial Park, Springfield, MA
American basswood (Tilia americana); Confederate cemetery, Charlottesville, VA
American basswood (Tilia americana); Confederate cemetery, Charlottesville, VA
Atlas cedar (Cedrus atlantica) and Norway spruce (Picea abies); Confederate cemetery, Charlottesville, VA
Atlas cedar (Cedrus atlantica) and Norway spruce (Picea abies); Confederate cemetery, Charlottesville, VA
Nearly mature olive fruit; Assisi, Italy; October-November.
Nearly mature olive fruit; Assisi, Italy; October-November.
Olive tree, natural bonzai, growing from crack in pavement; Assisi, Italy
Olive tree, natural bonzai, growing from crack in pavement; Assisi, Italy

See tropical as well as temperate climate trees. Climb into the amazing tree walk where visitors explore treetops.

Here's some tree physiology explained simply.

A peek at some of the most magnificent trees in the world!

Walk through a California redwood forest in February.

The Finale of he Lorax Movie

The Lorax (Classic Seuss)
The Lorax (Classic Seuss)

"I am the Lorax. I speak for the trees."

 

Show your love of trees.... - Listen to the Lorax.

Lorax face T-shirt with All Sizes (Adult XL, Orange)
Lorax face T-shirt with All Sizes (Adult XL, Orange)

"I am the Lorax. I speak for the trees."Show your support for trees by wearing a Lorax tee-shirt!

 

Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.

— Martin Luther

Help your kids show their love for trees. "I am the Lorax, I speak for the trees.

Lorax face Kid's T-shirt with All Sizes (Small, Orange)
Lorax face Kid's T-shirt with All Sizes (Small, Orange)

Help your kids show their love for trees. "I am the Lorax, I speak for the trees."

 

Points to Ponder

  • Please tell me what you think about this introductory Hubpage.
  • Is there too much information about me?
  • Would you like to see more photos of trees?
  • How do you like the videos?
  • What interests you the most about trees?

Sound off!

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    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @VioletteRose LM: Hi! Thanks so much for stopping by, reading and commenting on this lens. I need to get busy and have my love of trees show through on some new lenses.

    • VioletteRose LM profile image

      VioletteRose LM 3 years ago

      Very nice lens, I love trees :)

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
      Author

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @jmchaconne: Hi Jim,

      Thanks for visiting my Tree HUgger lens and for sharing the url to your waterfall lens and leaving your poem. I simply can not "journel" nor write poetry. Perhaps you believe, as I do, that the good Lord gives each of us different gifts? FYI, watch where you put the willow, roots are terribly invasive...Arbor Day Foundation is great!

    • jmchaconne profile image

      jmchaconne 3 years ago

      Not to worry, I think your lens is excellent, keep doing what you do! I'm a fellow tree hugger. I recently constructed a water fall, and wanted to give it a Japanese garden motif. I thought trees would be out of the question because of the limited space, and root invasion into the parking lot, and walk, Until I was introduced to Japanese dwarf trees. I wrote a lens about it called Wildwood Farm. The poem I wrote, expresses my feelings about trees. I especially love Willows, and just joined the Arbor Foundation, and they are sending a Willow and a Birch for jointing! Keep up the good work!

      Tree

      Roots firmly planted deep down in earth's embrace

      Stately knotted mottled trunk bent to the wind

      Enfolding branches reach skyward for the warming sun

      Leaves sway rhythmically to the silent song of life

      Presence filled with dignity witness to antiquity

      Teach me what you know of life

      Of death

      Of god

      ~

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @Ruthi: Hi Ruthi! Thanks for visiting my page. Sometimes, unfortunately, we need those people who are willing to tie themselves to trees worth saving.

    • profile image

      Ruthi 3 years ago

      I wouldn't say I'm a tree "hugger" in the sense of tying myself to a tree to save it, but I am a lover of trees.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @PNWtravels: Hi Vicki, Thanks for visiting and commenting! I'm always happy to meet another Tree Hugger.

    • PNWtravels profile image

      Vicki Green 3 years ago from Wandering the Pacific Northwest USA

      I am a tree hugger, too and enjoyed this page!

    • profile image

      tonyleather 3 years ago

      I am a passionate believer in saving trees, especially after finding that older trees are TEN times more efficient at CO2 absorption than younger ones! That being so, surely the rainforests should be left alone?

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @Colin323: You can imagine my sadness 50+ years later when I went back and found parking lot and manicured grounds where the willows had been. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    • profile image

      Colin323 3 years ago

      Trees deserve a big hug. Especially those sad willows.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @ColettaTeske: Dear "BearTale" Yes, it's always nice to meet and greet another tree hugger. Seattle is a wonderful place to live and work. Unfortunately, the last time I visited there was about ten years ago. The parks along the locks from the lakes to the sound were fantastic. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave your comments. I appreciate it all.

    • profile image

      ColettaTeske 3 years ago

      I've always been a tree hugger and it's wonderful to meet another tree hugger. Trees inspire me. I'm looking forward to following along with your tree travels! Congratulations!

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @Jerzimom: Hi CherylFay, Thanks for stopping by and leaving such good comments about my Tree Hugger intro. Was your Dad someone who liked to plant trees? Or does the term "tree planter" indicate some special affiliation?

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @Brite-Ideas: Hi Brite-ideas, Thanks for stopping by, reading my introduction and taking the time to comment. I do like the way you have laid out the intro to your profile page.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @masunyoananda: Hi Masunyoananda, Thank you for for your thanks! Thanks especially for commenting upon my photos. I work hard at getting them. BTW, I do like your flag counter on your profile page.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @DecoratingEvents: Hi Mandee, Thanks for stopping by, reading my intro lens and your great comments. I really had to dig deeply into my past to get down on paper why I feel as I do about trees.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @SteveKaye: Steve, Thanks for stopping by and for your great input. I hope to be able to do a few lenses about ongoing efforts to save trees, like the Stadium Woods debate at Virginia Polytech...(VT) in my home state.

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      SteveKaye 3 years ago

      We need tree huggers. Lots of them. Sadly, the "Let it die" folks keep cutting down trees as if there was an infinite supply of them. And so trees are disappearing. The question then, is when do they stop? Will they stop when there are 100 trees? Ten? One? Thank you for publishing this.

    • SheGetsCreative profile image

      Angela F 3 years ago from Seattle, WA

      Great into and love the name.

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 3 years ago

      I love trees of all kinds and enjoy sitting in the backyard on a nice spring or summer day just watching them sway! Congratulations!

    • profile image

      masunyoananda 3 years ago

      Wow, the pics are amazing. I love nature and you have shown its real beauty here. Thanks a lot...:)

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Congratulations, and great idea for a niche

    • Jerzimom profile image

      Cheryl Fay Mikesell 3 years ago from Ladysmith, WI

      Its a great into ens. The information is good and you have lots of knowledge My Dad was a tree planter back in the day. I use to help him on the planter. There fond memories.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
      Author

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @Heidi Vincent: Thank you so much stopping by and commenting on this lens and wishing me well on this new endeavor.

    • Heidi Vincent profile image

      Heidi Vincent 3 years ago from GRENADA

      I love trees. The capture breeze and keep a place cool. I'll be looking out for this 'Tree Hugger' contributor niche, Cercis.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
      Author

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @Sylvestermouse: Cynthia, Thanks so much for stopping by to visit this new endeavor of mine. I am excited about working on this and watching the project unfold. This is the perfect way for me to put my travel, photography and love of trees, as well as other plants, together.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image
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      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      @sousababy: Rosemary, Thanks so much for stopping by to check out this new endeavor. Your gracious comments certainly hit the spot!

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 3 years ago

      Trees are the lungs of the earth - we need to be replanting and caring for them more. I love your enthusiasm and wow, over 50 years worth of experience writing, teaching, and photographing trees certainly does make you an expert. Congrats on your new role!

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 3 years ago from United States

      The Redbud is such a beautiful tree. I can well imagine your friends believe it is an appropriate nickname for you. Like you, I do love trees. They give their "everything" for us and we should protect them.

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