March 15, 2014

The sad Story of Zell's Mammoth Tree

 Source: sagen.at

Roland: The other day at lunch I heard a colleague from another plant ask: "What happened to the tree you used to have in Zell?" When I asked "What tree?" it was explained to me that our little town used to have a well-known landmark, a mammoth tree with a height of 30m or more. For 30 years the tree had hold the record as Germany's tallest Christmas tree.

Unfortunately it was hit by lightning in August 2011 - at the age of 107 years - and lost the top half. Luckily nobody but the tree itself was injured. The sad remains were a 10m something tall trunk that was deemed to dangerous to stay in a populated area.

So after long and intense discussions it had been decided that the tree needed to be felled. A 'funeral' was arranged by the town's people, and after saying their Goodbyes, the former landmark was felled and transported away. What stayed is a stump smack in the middle of our smalltown, reminding the locals of a good friend lost.

Google Map bird eye view - A mighty shadow!

8 comments:

  1. Damaged by wind, weather, disease or insects? Sad that it's gone...

    That really is a pretty tall tree to have in the middle of town!

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    1. Yes, it was really tall. You can still find it on Google Earth, it draws quite a shadow there! According to the article where the second photo was taken from, the tree actually had started to show signs of aging even before it was struck by lightning. That lightning might have been a 'mercy kill'...

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  2. Oh that is too bad. Their identity, too. Now they are known for the lost tree? Or will they seek something else?

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    1. They are still known for 'cock and hen', but this is a different story we will tell later!

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  3. A very interesting story; the fact that the tree was allowed, in that small space, to become so tall in the first place though once "tallest" I'm sure the precedent had been set. Its height may have saved other nearby tall structures from that same lightning bolt?

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    1. I think that a such a tall tree is destined to be hit by lightning sooner or later. Not sure if it would have been possible to attach a lightning rod to it though, but this is hindsight. You are right, very close to the tree there is the stork tower; this might have been damaged badly if the tree were not around that day!

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  4. To live that long and then be taken out by Mother Nature - sad indeed. At least they had a funeral for it.

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    1. Yes, a funeral, and even T-Shirts! There were many who tried to save the tree, but in the end apparently everybody realized that it was beyond saving! But seeing the photos from back then and comparing them to the same place today, there is definitely something missing!

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