Trembling Giant

Reclaimed wood from the Saskatchewan prairies.

I made two of these artworks and called them ‘Trembling Giant’ – a name after the type of tree that I primarily used in the geometric sky: Aspen. An absolute marvel of a tree species to learn about. Aspen is deciduous tree native to cold regions and found at high altitudes and typically grow in environments that are dominated by coniferous trees. They even have photosynthetic bark making it possible for them to grow without leaves! But in my opinion, the most fascinating display of this species is ‘Pando’ – otherwise known as The Trembling Giant. It is an estimated 80,000 year old colony of aspens that is derived from a single seedling. ONE SEED that was the beginning to a massive root system that has spread over 108 acres of land in Utah. Aspen roots can send up new trunks as far as 40 meters away from the parents tree – so the entire forest is essentially one giant organism that weighs 6 million kilograms… making it the heaviest known organism on our planet and one of the oldest. Because of the colony’s single root system, its been able to survive forest fires due to the extensive underground body, allowing the new sprouts to safely regrow once the fire has passed. Amazing.
Unfortunately, its not unstoppable. The long term survival of this incredible colony is uncertain due to drought, human development, and grazing.
How crazy is it that this even exists? Please take a moment to look at those amazing natural colours that come from the harvested wood – absolutely no finish was added to this piece. Such a smooth, well blended colour pallette.