Redbuds' colorful show on full display in state
PURISTS have always insisted that mistletoe was a poor choice for the official state flower, but few would argue with the selection of the redbud as Oklahoma's official state tree. When you see mistletoe in December, you're seeing a parasite. When you see a redbud in late March or early April, you're seeing paradise.
NewsOK Related Articles
To mistletoe we've attached an almost spiritual significance. Redbud has none of that, but we would argue that nothing stirs the spirit more than the sight of a redbud at the peak of its beauty.
True mistletoe is European; the Oklahoma variety resembles it enough that the name is appropriate. Scandinavians associated mistletoe with their goddess of love. This is one explanation for the link between the plant and the planting of a kiss. Mistletoe was the “flower” of choice for wintertime grave decorations among the poorest settlers of early Oklahoma. It was free and plentiful.
Redbuds are also plentiful, but through most of the year they're scarcely noticed. They're underwhelming in the autumn and so-so in the summer. The redbud lumbers on through the coldest months, a small but stately tree, until arriving at this time of the year.
Then, all glory breaks out.
Perhaps, if the blooms came later, when the leaves of other trees would mask the presence of the redbud, it would not have become the state tree. Certainly, if the choice for state tree had been made based upon fall color, the redbud would have lost. As it is, there was simply no other choice.
Voices Photo Galleriesview all
- 10457Oklahoma tornadoes: Cost, custom keep basements scarce
- 9286Oklahoma tornadoes: Plaza Towers Elementary School teacher shoved students into bathroom as wall collapsed
- 5848Downtown wish list includes Super Target
- 4983Oklahoma tornadoes: The 'Big Dog,' the little boy and the hug that triumphs over tragedy
- 4420Oklahoma City pastor will face trial in fatal shooting of son-in law
- 4301Oklahoma tornadoes: Price family recovering after some heavy blows
- 4216How to help tornado victims