Fringe trees (Chionanthus virginicus) are a small (12-20 feet), deciduous, ornamental tree that fits perfectly under telephone and utility lines. The botanical name translates as snow flower, which mirrors the fluffy, white flowers that cover trees in bloom. Some people call the fringe tree Grancy graybeard or old man’s beard, but flowers don’t look like a gray beard.
Fringe trees are native to eastern United States and aren’t commonly seen in the Holy Lands. Today I saw a fringe tree for sell in a local nursery in Roanoke, Virginia. Trees grow male and female flowers on separate trees. Until the tree bears flowers, it is difficult to discern if it is male or female. Flowers bloom about 2 weeks out of the year.
This beautiful fringe tree was growing in the Hershey Garden in Hershey, PA. Trees in the garden are well-labeled.
The first time I viewed a fringe tree, I was awed by its beauty; however, I could not capture the beauty in a photograph. The flowers didn’t seem to standout from the green limbs and greenish tinge of stems and branches. I had to get a close-up photograph of the flower to see its beauty.
Reflection: I often scan my environment looking for something that stands out and captures my attention. At times I miss true beauty, like the beauty of a fringe tree flower, in these scans. Maybe I should slow down.
I love Bible plants along with their symbolism. If you want to learn more about them, read my two books: 1) Rooted in God and 2) God as a Gardener. You can purchase them from my website: Carolyn Roth Ministry at http://www.CarolynRothMinistry.com/
Copyright June 7, 2014, Carolyn A. Roth