After the Paris Attacks, Memory Trees Are Taking Root

After the Paris Attacks, Memory Trees Are Taking Root

Solidarity tree, memory tree or freedom tree: memorial trees are increasingly planted in France. In Paris, but not only. Towns or villages pay tribute to the victims of the January and November 2015 attacks.

The "Oak of solidarity" of Dammartin-en-Goële is among the lastest trees planted in France, on January 10, in memory of the victims of the 2015 attacks. This town, northeast of Paris, was the scene of a hostage taking, January 9, 2015. It opted for an English oak (Quercus robur), or common oak, to embody this tribute, in the Corbie Park.
Likewise, the town of Montgeron chose an oak for its memorial planting. The tree planted on Sunday, January 10, is called a "symbol of strength" by the First Deputy Mayor and Chairman of the Essonne County Council, François Durovray.
The day before, in the Poitevin marshland, the local authorities of Sansais-la-Garette planted 130 ash trees. This planting is aimed at an extended homage to "all the victims of the attacks in the world, especially those in Paris November 13, 2015". For the occasion, the mayor Rabah Laichour notably associated Delphine Batho, MP and former Minister of Ecology.

Earlier last week, Paris had its own symbolic plantation. The city erected, on January 6, a Burgundy Turkey oak (Quercus cerris) on the Republic Square, located at the corner of Boulevard Magenta in the 10th district. The operation was entrusted to the Robert company. The tree 12 meters high and 70 cm in circumference comes from the Arbor tree nursery, based in Belgium.
The January 6 is not chosen at random. It makes a double tribute to the victims of attacks in Paris a year earlier, in January 2015, and to the victims of last November's attacks.
Services of the City of Paris also called upon twenty gardeners, among municipal auditors preparing for the Breuil school, an institution run by the city. After working the soil, they set "ivy and more than 1,000 perennial" in the surrounding of the tree.

Such memory trees
tend to multiply. Earlier jumble includes:
- Two magnolias in Forges-les-Eaux (Seine-Maritime), planted in November;
- The "freedom tree", erected in Igny (Essonne) in late November;
- A green oak which took root in Palluau (Vendee) on December 2;
- The tree which will "bloom every spring", planted by the students of Saligny-sur-Roudon (Allier) in late 2015.

Chrystelle Carroy/Forestopic