Written by Charlene Hartung


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5 May, 2022

I’ve made it a tradition to buy myself a tree on my birthday. Currently I have 2 lemon trees and a fig tree – the tradition started 3 years ago. 

When I first bought the fig tree it was a tallish slender tree with a few leaves right at the top. During the same time, we got my son a labrador for his birthday and unfortunately the labrador destroyed my tree. What remained was a small little twig that seemed dead. My husband wanted to throw it away, but I insisted on moving the tree and promised I would nurture it back to ‘health’. 

I eventually replanted it into the soil and really babied it, watering it lovingly, spoke to it often and took special care of it. 

The first round of fruit I got from it was one little fig. It was small but very very sweet. 

Today, almost 2 years later, the tree has not grown much but it is now a fat tree and this season it has given me about 4 large ripe figs a week. So much so, that I can lovingly give some away to people who know the story and can appreciate the fruit from this tree. 

Here are the lessons I’ve learnt from my tree:

  1. Never discard something that is broken. If you take special care of it, you can literally nurture it back to health. 
  2. Don’t underestimate the underdog. 
  3. The most beautiful things can come from new beginnings. 
  4. Given another chance, you will be pleasantly surprised.
  5. You only need one person to believe in you and stand by your side. 

Everytime I enjoy a fig I remember how far my tree has come and I am amazed by its tenacity. 


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