It is a Golden day for Canada in Sochi! Our women’s curling team, led by the amazing Jennifer Jones, has skipped to gold in the twenty-second Winter Olympics! And she did it with a perfect run; not a loss in sight. That warms a lot of red and white hearts back home, let me tell you!
With Jones’ gold medal, Canada bumped up our medal count to 19 at these XXII Winter Olympics in Russia, but that wasn’t the last one of the day. The women’s hockey team took to the ice later in the day in a battle for our twentieth medal; the question was whether it would be gold or silver. And at 11:50 in overtime at the Bolshoy Ice Dome Marie-Philip Poulin scored her second goal of the game to give our Canadian women their 4th straight Olympic gold medal in a row!
That makes one case of beer coming to Prime Minister Stephen Harper from our neighbour to the south’s leader, Barack Obama. Will we get a second one after tomorrow?
You see Canada and the USA were going head to head in Olympic hockey, and Barry and Steve decided a friendly bet of a case of beer on the winner would be perfect. The men hit the hockey rink tomorrow at 12:00 pm EST. Regardless though, two more medals are guaranteed to be added to our count tomorrow, as the men’s curling team is also set to contend in a gold medal game as well.
Can you tell I am all caught up in Olympic fever?
Regardless of whether the medal is gold, silver or bronze, Canadian athletes should be proud to represent our country. In fact, being eligible to compete in the Olympics at all is an awesome feat.
But if CLC Tree Services were giving out medals, ours would be slightly different in design. Sure we could offer gold, silver and bronze, but we’ve got some beautiful trees in those shades too that would add beauty to anyone’s home.
Olympic Coloured Trees
GOLDen Weeping Willow (Salix alba vitellina) –
Hardy to zone 2, this golden tree grows 20 metres high (65 ft) and 10 metres wide (32 ft). This tree prefers moist or wet soil, but isn’t fussy if it is light, medium or heavy in density. Give it sunshine and it will thrive! Note that where you plant it will be its final home though, as this willow dislikes being transplanted.
The inner bark of the golden willow is edible, but it’s more common use is as a source of salicylic acid, otherwise known as aspirin. Of course, you could also weave a beautiful basket from its branches too. Or perhaps you could fashion a neat lanyard to hang your own gold medal on?
SILVER Maple (Acer saccharinum) –
There is no shame in this silver that is native to southwestern Ontario. It can grow upwards of 35 metres tall and can have a trunk with a girth of up to 100 cm. The leaves on this maple are light green and have 5-7 lobes. Give this tree moist, rich soil and preferably full sun, and you will have a beautiful specimen on your hands. Just make sure you give it room to grow, as it has lots of roots that might interfere with nearby sewer pipes if planted too close to your home.
Barring that, it provides a ready source of food for squirrels, birds, and deer, plus it makes a great home for raccoons, owls and woodpeckers. Due to its light weight, it is also a favourite wood for cabinet making, musical instruments, flooring and tool handles. Either that or you could bask in its luxuriant shade come a hot summer’s day.
BRONZE Loquat (Eriobotrya deflexa) –
Just because bronze isn’t first place, doesn’t mean this tree doesn’t earn a special place of its own. This bronze tree is native to Taiwan and South Vietnam, but can be found in USDA hardiness zones 9-10. It grows from 4 1/2 – 6 metres (15 – 20 feet) with a canopy of 3 – 4 1/2 metres (10 – 15 feet). Contrary to its name, the leaves on this tree are green, but start out a coppery colour. It has showy white flowers in the spring, followed by inedible fruit. This tree can be grown as a specimen or in planters, but aside from its usefulness as a hedge, as well as a source of food for birds, you won’t find many other uses.
Perhaps you could just bask in its bronze glory, if you are lucky enough to live in a climate suitable for it!
So here’s to hoping for another gold-medal day tomorrow. If silver crosses Canadian palms, that would be just as excellent though.