This particular hillside has many small trees popping up that are clearly invasive non-natives like princess tree, tallow tree, and mimosa. I am not fond of any of them. Natives like cherry laurel and hackberry and sweet gum sprout up everywhere too.
When I see a young tree it helps to know its habit - is it an under story tree (one that grows underneath the taller trees) or will it want to grow to 60-80 feet, and if so, is there room above for this to happen? I look up and think, "Does this tree have a future in this space?" If it does not seem to then out it comes.
I had come across a little grove of young sassafras trees on this rocky hillside the year before. Now I am clearly a fan of sassafras; I leave them along almost all the time. Sassafras takes me right back to my childhood and I love the shape of the leaves and the smell of the roots. Sassafras has a wonderful brown bark and a twisty gnarly pattern and is an under story tree and it gets lots of love from me. I smile to think how many homeowners overrule me on sassafras. Not everyone is a fan.
You can read about sassafras here and here.
So I was making my way along the hill, pulling up ivy and other vines, deciding on this or that shrub or bush, and this wonderful red sassafras leaf set off against the glossy green ivy caught my attention, so I grabbed my iPhone and snapped a few pictures. I think it's mighty pretty.
Not to get overly philosophical here but I have always been moved by these little isolated "moments" of beauty. See, this particular view of this leaf on this ivy on these rocks, well, in the history of the universe this is a unique moment, never to be exactly repeated. And I, normal as I am, still a unique person (as all persons are), also never to be exactly repeated, able to see and rejoice in it. A moment in time, noticed, appreciated.
And captured here for you.