Thursday, March 15, 2012

Old Tree

One of the locations we stopped and photograph was Goose Island State Park.  The park consists of 321 acres and is surrounded by the St. Charles and Aransas Bays and is located north of Rockport in Aransas County.  The state of Texas acquired the acreage in 1931-1935 in the earliest park facilities work and instructed by Civilian Conservation Corps in the early 1930’s.
 
- Big Tree_DSC4391 March 10, 2012 NIKON D7000
"Old Tree"
  Goose Island is the location of the "Big Tree" which was named the State Champion Coastal Live Oak,(Quercus virginiana) in 1969.  The tree is estimated to be over 1000 years old, the "Big Tree" circumference is 35 feet, it is 44 feet in height and its crown spreads over 90 feet.  The "Big Tree" is the largest Live Oak in Texas.
There are 2 plaques near the tree which people have written in show their love for the tree.

Plaque at the front of the Big Tree by John E. Williams:

Welcome to my home.
I am a live oak tree and I am very old. I have seen spring return more than a thousand times. I can remember hundreds of hurricanes, most I'd rather forget, but I withstood. There was a big fire once. I hate fires.
Around me are my offspring. We are an old-dune woodland community. We provide shelter and acorns for squirrels, jays, raccoons, bobwhite, deer, javelin, and most other members of our community.
For most of my life I belonged only to myself. Now I belong to you, or so I'm told. Humpf! Branch breakers and root trampers the lot of you.
Some years ago someone came and patched my cracks, trimmed my dead branches, killed my pests and healed my fungus rots. Was that you? I'm feeling much better, thank you.
I am tired now. You may leave me in peace when you are ready to go. Please leave my home as you found it. I have important things to do. The seasons are changing again and I must get ready.

The Big Tree
by Mary Hoekstra, Rockport

I have gathered sun and rain to grow green leaves,
Swaying softly in spring, rustling like applause in fall.
My limbs have shaded generations;
My roots have reached for centuries;
My children and their children's children surround me,
Here in this peaceful part of my land.
Golden sunlight diamonds have glinted on the ground around me.
Cold fingers of ice have touched my heartwood.
Dust-dry days of sandstorms have scoured my skin.
Torrents of rain, driven by gales have rushed at me,
And I have swayed, but stayed unbroken.
Silver moonlight has kept me company many a night.
Yet through all the seasons, sorrows, bitterness, and beauty,
All of the history I have withstood and witnessed,
There has been one thing I could not do.
I could not grow green dollars, or silver, or gold.
Will you help me, standing here before me?
Then we may both grow old together,
As old friends should,
One of flesh, one of wood.
- Untitled-1 March 15, 2012_-2
6 picture stiched pano but expose is wrong
There are other, smaller Live Oak's surrounding the "Big Tree".  The "Big Tree" was how to photograph because of its size and did require the use of a wide angle lens. I did take a panorama of the tree, however, I forgot to change my camera settings to manual this and so each portion of the panorama did have a difference in exposure

- _DSC4376 March 10, 2012 NIKON D7000
Live Oaks
- _DSC4398-Edit March 10, 2012 NIKON D7000
Black and White of Live Oaks
- _DSC4410 March 10, 2012 NIKON D7000
Threesome  Trunks
- _DSC4411 March 10, 2012 NIKON D7000
Entrance