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250 Year Old Southern Live Oak Tree

Hosting Epiphytes: Spanish Moss and Resurrection Fern

By: Astrid Hiemer - Sep 27, 2013


Trees fascinate me more than plants!  The BFA project-space already contains a series of my photographs of Birches and Baobab Trees, Ancient  Spirit Trees, published in November of 2012.  Recent work includes photographs of palm trees that we encountered during our travels south, distorted with the assistance of Photoshop, yet in an alluring way. 

Along the road on our 2013 trip we encountered a magnificent Southern Live Oak Tree. Fortunately, the sun was in a most advantageous position so that I was able to take some fine photographs. If my memory serves me right, we had left Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, on the way to Charleston, South Carolina, and were driving on Route 17 South and made just a quick stop. Unfortunately, I did not take notes of the name of the restaurant where the oak tree stands or exact location, while hurrying after my travel-mate on the way to our next location!

The plaque outside the restaurant gives vital information; please read below. Epiphytes are plants that grow on another plant or object for support, such as a tree. Parasites are better known and defined as organisms that draw nourishment from another living organism amd frqequently destroy the host plant or tree over time. Here’s the text of the plaque:

Southern Live Oak Tree

Our large live oaks are approximately 250 years-old.
We are caring for them with pruning and periodic feeding.
The massive branches also support other plants:
Gray strands of hanging Spanish Moss
(which is an epiphyte and not a parasite),
And Resurrection Fern, which grows along
The tops of the main branches,
and looks dead when dry – but becomes
green again after rain.

Enjoy my view……