A Virtuous Woman or a Shade Tree?

OK, last week my mind was going strange places. Stranger than usual, even for me, and I think the heat had something to do with it. Not the heat at Redquarters, because we actually got a few days of relief from the high pressure ridge that has been baking us for the past month. No, downstate, where Peter Grant and a few other writers live. http://bayourenaissanceman.blogspot.com/2016/07/so-hot.html

And one of the commentariat mentioned shade trees. Now, shade trees are one of those things that you don’t take for granted, especially after you have one die or fall over, as hit Redquarters last year. The main late-afternoon shade for the west-facing, northern end of the house died (80′ locust tree) and had to be cut down last autumn. It is missed. There’s a saying from East Texas that describes someone who puts short-term gain over long-term as “He cut down his shade tree for firewood.”

I don't think the tree farm near Peter's place will deliver this one. Burr Oak.

I don’t think the tree farm will deliver this one. Burr Oak.

This is closer to your basic shade tree starter kit, some patience required. This is probably three-four years old, and not too close to the house.

A nice native tree, planted where it won't eat the house too much.

A nice native tree, planted where it won’t eat the house too much.

So, the other night as I was thinking about shade trees and hot afternoons and sundry, the opening of the description of a good wife from Proverbs 31 came to mind. You know, the one that starts :”Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her . . .” (10-11a) “Strength and honour are her clothing and she shall rejoice in time to come.” (25)

So, onย  a long hot July afternoon when it’s 100 degrees and more in the shade and a heat index of “oh lawdy Moses”, which is more valuable? A virtuous woman or a really good shade tree? And who’s brave enough to ask Mrs. Peter her opinion?


7 thoughts on “A Virtuous Woman or a Shade Tree?

  1. I’ll take the virtuous woman. I can always buy an air conditioner or a shade canopy and wait for the shade tree to grow. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Mrs. Peter Grant discouraged her husband from cutting down the tree in the back yard that, to be fair, is a danger to the fence. Once she discovered it was a fruiting mulberry, there was a moratorium on further discussions about removing it. (Yes, they stain. But… mulberries!)

    Once summer hit, she decided to engage the services of an arborist next spring on how best to encourage it to grow huge and extend its shade toward the house. Even. Mr. Grant now recognized the wisdom of not mentioning tree removal from the back yard, and has bowed to the decree that any proposed patio designs will include said tree.

  3. We have one of the best shade trees I’ve ever seen in our back yard — a winged elm. It also blooms every July, and the sweet scent is almost overwhelming. We have two maple trees (planted by the city, and thus not “ours”) in the front, and a Chinese elm closer to the house in the back. We also use a swamp cooler to stay cool, which is much cheaper than air conditioning.

    As for a virtuous woman, Jean and I have been married for over 50 years now. I read her Proverbs 31 on our first wedding anniversary, saying she was mine.

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