Monday, March 5, 2018

#0243 "January Birch"

From March 1990...

This is another unique white birch tree at the King City Radar site on the same January day in 1990 as "Grey Day Beech" (#0242) and "The Birch" (#0239). The white birch is also known as the paper birch or canoe birch.
Every tree is an individual with a story to tell even though they do not travel much and put down roots very early in their life. The birch is a pioneer tree species that can colonize open fields like the King City Radar site. Mature paper birches within mature forests are rare as they are overcome by the more shade tolerant trees as secondary succession progresses. Birches like colder climates and do not survive the heat very well. A strong, flexible white birch tree can live for 80 to 140 years. Trees in colder climates can last a hundred years and I presume that would include this tree and the white birch in the Mowat Cemetery. The wood of a birch tree is flammable even when it's wet making it a good starter fuel for campfires in all kinds of weather.

The white birch is known by the celts as Beith (pronounced 'bay') and is the symbol of new beginnings, regeneration, hope, new dawns and the promise of what is to come. The birch tree carries ancient wisdom and yet appears forever young.

White birch prefer well drained and dry soils. It is a medium-sized deciduous tree typically reaching 20 metres (66 ft) tall with the largest white birches reaching to 130 feet (40 m) with a trunk up to 30 inches (76 cm) in diameter like the one I painted. Trees in a more open landscape like this one tend to develop multiple trunks with branches close to the ground. Trees within a forest are more likely to be straight with a single trunk. The yellow leaves of autumn had already been stripped from this very exposed tree on the Doppler Radar site.

I went for a walk after lunch and before I had to report back to a seminar. I was at the site to help with the training of staff. I invented some unique ways to look at Doppler Radar. Pattern recognition simplified the often complex Doppler signatures so that a meteorologist could deduce vertical profiles in wind, thermal advection and stability along with other important processes. Art can be a science and vice versa. Never stop learning...
 Click to go to Chadwick Art... Thank you!

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