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Ancient bonsai tree survived the atomic bomb in Japan.
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When America dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima in 1945, a great many things were destroyed in the devastating blast but some survived it to this day.

Marking the 70th anniversary of the bombing Aug. 6, the United States government will also honor the survival of a white pine bonsai tree that managed to live through it.

Housed in the National Arboretum in Northeast Washington D.C., no one guessed about the tree's significance until 2001.

The tree, donated by a bonsai master named Masaru Yamaki, was part of a 53-specimen gift to the United States for its 1976 bicentennial. Little was known about the tree until March 8, 2001, when — with no advance notice — two brothers visiting from Japan showed up at the museum to check on their grandfather's tree.

Ensuring the continued survival of such an important piece of the collection is no easy task. It falls to Jack Sustic, who has been the curator of the Bonsai and Penjing Museum since 2002.

Bonsai, Sustic said, refers not to the type of tree but rather the manner in which it is cared for. It is the blending of nature and art, he said.

On Aug. 6, 1945, a 9,700-pound bomb exploded over the city at 8:15 a.m. A walled nursery belonging to the Yamakis was less than two miles from the site of the bomb blast, but the ancient tree, Sustic said, was just far enough away to survive.

"Location, location, location," Sustic said. "It was up against a wall. It must have been the wall that shielded it from the blast."



Keep going little tree. In the words of Dr. Ian Malcom:

Syracuse University professor Sam Van Aken made a tree that gives 40 different kind of fruit.
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Talk about a tree that keeps on giving.

National Geographic released this video of Syracuse University professor Sam Van Aken greatest creation: a tree graphted with 39 other branches that grows a total of 40 different fruit varieties.

The mad scientist Art Professor grows different types of cherries, peaches, plums, nectarines and apricots that bloom through out the year.

Look at this strikingly beautiful abomination of nature:



Syracuse.com tells how the whole offense to God happened:

[Van Aken] explains that grafting works by slicing branches with buds from one tree and inserting it into a matching slit in a branch on the Tree of 40 Fruit. He wraps the wound with tape, and as it heals the bud grows into a new branch.

"It's a metaphor for a lot of things," Van Aken told The Post-Standard in 2011, when he planted a tree on the SU quad. He added that he specifically chose 40 because it appears often in the Bible: "It's a number that represents bounty."





Van Aken describes the project as a living work of art, though he has admitted it could have implications for genetic engineering and preserving different fruit varieties against food monocultures. He adds more branches from other varieties each year, and a completed Tree of 40 Fruit takes nearly a decade, but the wait is worth it.



He said it began when he stumbled upon an abandoned orchard growing wild and not when he had meglomaniacal delusions of grandeur.

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Tumblr blogger Crummywater gears up for the holiday season with a Tumblr-themed Christmas tree. Check out the original post for close up shots!

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By Unknown
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The Root Bridges of Cherrapunji refer to bridges that are woven from the roots of living rubber trees in the Cherrapunji rainforests of Meghalaya, India. Some of them are more than a hundred feet long, grow over decades and withstand the weight of fifty people. Not only are they environmentally friendly, the bridges are also quite utilitarian since the roots grow stronger over their lifespan. For more info, check out this BBC video.

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