Goodbye Stumpy Cherry Tree, a symbol of friendship between Japan and the United States

Residents and tourists bid farewell and honor the cherry tree these days short, a tree that has been so photographed that it is considered an icon of the city of Washington. almost They will cut it and it will turn into compostas part of a project to rehabilitate the levee along the Potomac River, which is flanked by some of the major monuments on the busy National Mall.

Stumpy, which can be translated as “The underdog“, a much-loved specimen, is the most famous of the 1,400 trees that adorn the area with its branches filled with pink flowers. AlthoughCrisp appearance and funky aestheticIt is believed to be the oldest.

Stories have been circulating on social media for years linking his “ugly duckling” appearance to stories of love and overcoming.

It is the last flower of this tree and hundreds of others located on the southern bank. About 300 trees will be destroyed, half of which will be cherry trees, planted along about two kilometers of the reservoir adjacent to the river.

The dams have been collapsing for decades, and as sea levels rise in the context of the climate crisis, high tides are submerging the roots and lower part of the trunk. This situation makes them sick and some of them end up dying.

Mike LitterstA forest ranger, park spokesman, and National Mall worker advocate that logging won't be the end:

“It will all be composted. It will go back to the National Mall and spread over the roots of the survivors and provide them with nutrients. In Stumpy's case, we will take cuttings, clone them with the same genetic material, and replant them.”

The existing trees in the northern area will not be touched, and it is estimated that after three years, new specimens can be replanted in the southern end. According to Litterst, Stumpy's fans “will be able to show their loyalty by making a comeback.”

See also  In mid-August, the exodus was not sold out. "The Italians are held back by the high prices, it's only good for those who host American tourists"

Farewell to the Japanese authorities

The Embassy of Japan in Washington honored Stumpy and referred to him as “One of our favorite icons Friendship between Japan and the United States.”

The same diplomatic sources indicated that the importance of the celebration lies in the symbolism and values ​​it represents, and not in the trees themselves. In Japan, the blossoming of cherry trees, or hanami, is a first-class ancestral event, with traditions and celebrations associated with it.

The Hanami Festival has begun in the American capital 1912. Then Mayor of Tokyo Yukio OzakiWahb 3000 cherry trees are a sign of a good relationship That was there at the time Between the two countries.

However, it is unlikely that Stumpy and the other specimens were from this first planting, although national park officials acknowledge that the location of the original trees is not well documented. Mike Litterst I have included:

“The average lifespan of a cherry tree is about 50 years, so it would be extraordinary if Stumpy or anyone else could survive for 112 years.”

Representative of the Japanese Embassy, Yuki SugiyamaHe explained, “People have begun to appreciate flowers, and now Washington receives about 1.5 million tourists just for the blooming season.”

With the hashtag #Stumpy, networks were filled with messages of thanks and farewell to the symbolic tree.

Amy VickersAn amateur photographer told Reuters: “Last year there was a lot of flooding and national park rangers surrounded Stampe to protect it. I came to take a picture of him before they took him away“.

See also  The Moscow Supreme Court banned the international gay movement
Stompy's few branches open for the last time (Reuters/Bonnie Cash)

Cherry blossom festival

The farewell coincides with the beginning of spring celebrations this weekend National Cherry Blossom Festival. During this year's edition, the Japanese Prime Minister spoke, Fumio KishidaHe will pay an official visit to the city and have dinner with her Joe Biden On April 10th.

The festival is a popular event that runs until April 14 and includes exhibitions, food, parades, shows and markets. It has already been characterized by floods for many years, which have been increasingly severe as a result of global warming.

President of the festival organizing association, Diana MayhewHe says the works are good news: “Recently, floods uprooted trees and damaged others.”

Peak cherry blossom bloom is believed to occur when 70% of the flowers are in bloom, and that is expected to happen in Washington this weekend. With the climate crisis, the dates are getting earlier. Recently, the festival has also noticed that it no longer coincides with the blooming of flowers.

Business worth 113 million

This work comes as part of a $113 million project to repair dams that sank by about one and a half meters in land area and two meters in water. It will start in April and the trees will be cut between May and June.

Flooded levees and high tides also threaten infrastructure such as piers and have forced the Jefferson Memorial to close from time to time as the walkways leading to it are submerged by water.

In about three years, more are planned to be planted More trees than before: 455 new trees, including 274 cherry trees. but Stumpy's image as an icon will disappear At the most photographed point, in the so-called tidal basin.

See also  Fear of infection and local measures

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *