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Tree tunnels can take your breath away

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Tree Talk, Joanna Angle

I have always loved the way old trees, especially Live Oaks, arch over roads and lawns.

Every time I drive toward Edisto Island, the loveliness of moss-draped limbs hanging overhead gives me goosebumps.

Years ago it was such a thrill to walk under the magnificent trees in front of Oak Alley Plantation near New Orleans, that iconic scene that I had looked at wistfully in magazines for years.

Both of these places are examples of tree tunnels, roads or paths with trees on both sides forming a canopy overhead.

This tunnel effect may be achieved by formally planted, evenly spaced trees or by a more natural random placement.

In either case, they can be breathtakingly beautiful, as you can see for yourself with a quick Google search.

Among those making the world’s “most stunning” list are these:

  • Cherry blossoms floating in a cloud of deep pink high above a side street in Bonn, Germany, for seven to 10 days a year.
  • Ginkgo trees in Tokyo creating an ethereal cathedral of golden light.
  • A lane of bent, gnarly yews in Wales, believed to have been planted in the 18th century.
  • 300-year old beech trees comprising Northern Ireland’s famed site The Dark Hedges, like something out of a dream.
  • Two green miles in Ukraine following and covering a privately-owned railroad. This tunnel was actually shaped by the train’s passage three times a day.
  • South Africa’s Jacaranda Walk, a fragrant profusion of purple blossoming in October.
  • Japan’s Wisteria Tunnels, hanging clusters of purple, pink, white and yellow.
  • Brilliant crimson and orange hardwoods bringing autumn splendor to a Vermont state park.

Having seen captivating pictures of these and other tree tunnels, I think I should revise my “bucket list” to include seeing some in person.

Joanna Angle is a Master Tree Farmer and 2012 South Carolina Tree Farmer of the Year. Her Cedarleaf Farm in Chester County is a Certified Stewardship Forest and part of the American Tree Farm System.