On Tuesday morning, artist/poet/educator Flo Oy Wong shared her photo of these gorgeous peaches ripening on a tree in school garden near her home. Sweet Dawn, Flo’s neighborhood walking partner, wanted to bring her friends to enjoy the vibrant school garden, home of milkweed plants and more.
“From my morning exploration at the school garden behind my house. The insects – wasps, bees, ladybugs, Monarchs (big ones) – were plentiful.”
insects pollinate now wasps lady bug bees buzz on sunflowers milkweed grapevines near by
FLO OY WONG
July 28, 2021
Two days later on Thursday morning, Flo and her neighborhood walking partners, Wonderful Wendy and Sweet Dawn were so sad. They discovered that the peach tree had been cut down. Flo wrote a poem, Robust Peaches 2, about the giving volunteer tree — now a memory shared by friends.
Robust Peaches 2
Robust peaches, kissed by the sun, grow by a low concrete wall at the neighborhood school. Robust peaches. The peach tree’s inviting palette, a deep reddish hue with gold undertones, glow under azure sky. Abundance of fruit weighs heavily on limbs limping towards ground, enchanting walkers who pass by. Robust peaches. One day, workers tear down the peach tree, a volunteer one. No one planted it. It just grew. Soon, when children return, masked or double-masked, to start the new school year, the peach tree, pregnant with bounty, will no longer be there. Robust peaches. FLO OY WONG July 29, 2021
THE PEACH (Prunus persica, Rosaceae) is a deciduous tree native to the region of Northwest China between the Tarim Basin and the north slopes of the Kunlun Mountains, where it was first domesticated and cultivated. It bears edible juicy fruits with various characteristics, most called peaches and others, nectarines.
The peach tree is widely thought to have origins in China, but its evolutionary history is largely unknown. The oldest evidence for the peach has been Chinese archaeological records dating to 8000–7000 BP.
Various American Indian tribes are credited with migrating the peach tree across the United States, taking seeds along with them and planting as they roved the country. Today, California produces 65 percent of the total US crop of peaches.
Peaches are not only a popular fruit, but also are symbolic in many cultural traditions, such as in art, paintings, and folk tales such as Peaches of Immortality.
The Peach Blossom Spring is a fable written by Chinese poet Tao Yuanming (365-427) in 421 CE about “the chance discovery of an ethereal utopia where people lead an ideal existence in harmony with nature, unaware of the outside world for centuries.”
This stunning video is generated by a model which simulates complex interactions within the tree, including growth, carbon partitioning among organs and responses to environmental, management and genetic factors. The model presented here is of a peach tree but is not calibrated to a specific tree. Developed by Mitch Allen, P. Prusinkiewicz and T. DeJong in partnership with The Virtual Tree. From the UC DAVIS Fruit & Nut Research & Information Center.
The Heirloom Project with Roots and Shoots was created by ArtsEd4All to encourage the harvesting and sharing of free seeds with friends. The project shares stories and free resources about seed saving, planting and other small acts of kindness that can be taken to help pollinators, people and the environment.