As an entomologist, I’m often asked if I have a favourite insect. It feels like being asked to declare a favourite child, and so I usually say I can’t possibly pick just one.* Now that I work a lot in spruce-fir forests, I’m sometimes asked if I have a favourite tree. That’s a tough one – just in the forests where I live, there’s eastern hemlock, and sugar maple, and tamarack, and American beech, and butternut. But I have a favourite tree anyway, and it’s eastern white pine (Pinus strobus, although honestly, I wish it had a more interesting Latin name).
There’s something about a pine: majestic, soaring, the strong thick trunk with the delicate needles. Continue reading