Five years ago I planted two apple trees, a McIntosh and Granny Smith. When they went into the ground, I gave them the best start I knew how, with a good soil blend and plenty of care. I placed them in the yard surrounding a patio I wanted to set in; I imagined they would provide shade and also it would be great to just walk over and grab some fruit.
Year after year, I watched my apple trees, and nothing happened. They didn’t flower, produce fruit, or even grow much at all. I watered them and gave them fertilizer, but still, nothing. Even if they weren’t producing fruit, I was still utterly confused at how they weren’t even growing much at all. After five years they should have at least grew a few feet taller and wider.
By the end of last year I had just about given up on the two trees. If they weren’t going to give fruit, or even grow, then I was going to dig them up and replace them with some better quality trees.
On Sunday morning as I took my dogs out, I happened to look over and see that the McIntosh tree was done flowering… and full of fruit!
Seeing the small, but growing fruit on the tree made me feel incredibly happy. I had been patient, and then I had given up, but somehow the tree still came through. I had a moment of clarity and excitement. I realized that the tree wasn’t the problem, I was. I needed to be more patient and understand that things are actually out of my control. I can help the tree, but ultimately, this tree is growing and surviving in the world just as I am.
This tree and I will share the same space for as long as I live there, and although I will help it out with water and extra nutrients, it’s doing OK on it’s own. It just needed some time.