I grew up surrounded by snow-covered evergreens, blazing maples, acorned oaks, and flowering apple trees. I didn’t see a palm tree until I was 15 on my first trip to southern California. As I remember it, what impressed me most were not the tall skinny trees but the largeness of the uncrowded sky.
Living here, I’ve found it easy to take for granted the palm trees that line the streets and poke up over the walls of back yards. But gradually, I’ve come to appreciate their beauty…
I love the way they catch the breeze I’ve come to appreciate their variety too. There are 2000 species of palms, but basically two main types of palms, fan and feather.
fan palm, of course
feather palm at sunrise
I’ve come to appreciate their fruit like the bunch of dates here [but they also produce coconuts and oil]
My favorite place to see a palm tree: against the southern mountains*
*although we think of palms growing in humid, tropical climates, there are some varieties that do fine in temperatures of 5-10F [yes, that’s 5 farenheit, not celcius].
They grow straight and strong, living long and fruitful lives, so it’s no wonder the psalmist used them as a metaphor for following God:
The righteous will flourish like a palm tree,
they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon;
planted in the house of the Lord,
they will flourish in the courts of our God.
They will still bear fruit in old age,
they will stay fresh and green,
proclaiming, “The Lord is upright;
He is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in Him.”
Psalm 92: 12-15