Magical trees in a magical world
With the opening of the final Harry Potter movie, the Harry Potter era is finally coming to an end. The child actors are all grown up and launched into adulthood and successful careers. Voldemort is defeated and the Whomping Willow will whomp no more (in public). As our daFlores tribute to this special series of books and movies, let’s take a look at some magical trees found through the ages of fantasy novels.
Whomping Willow: The whomping willow is a particularly bad-tempered willow tree that Hogwarts students quickly learn to avoid. Those who come too close run the risk of being flogged by the swooping, swiping tree. Those who are clever (or wicked) can lure their enemies into the arms of the tree, which provides both humor and protection to the Harry Potter world.
Ents: In J.R.R. Tolkien’s magical world, ents are tree creatures, incredibly ancient, and a dying kind. In Middle Earth legend, the ent-wives left and are lost, never to come back. That means there are no entlings and no ent-romance. Ents move about as fast as growing oaks, which is to say not very fast at all, and the hobbits who encounter them are frustrated when they decide not to fight the evil forces. They show the ents the destruction done by Saruman, a good wizard turned bad, and the trees are infuriated so much that they start to battle the orcs.
Shannara: At the heart of the forest of Shannara is a single, amazing tree, the source of all life. The tree is dying. During the first Shannara legends, the hero quests to find the tree but it’s his companion who realizes that a sacrifice must be made to renew the magical tree.
Dryads: In Greek legends, dryads are tree-spirits. Taking a female form, the spirits dance and lure the unwary rather like sirens in the sea. Over time, the tree-spirits are said to have become sleepy and never dance any more. Tolkien also takes this idea and creates a magical forest that those nearby enter only at their own peril.
Ghost trees: In Rebecca’s World, there’s a city of glass, but all the trees have been burned down to make the glass. Unfortunately, by the time they realized that the trees kept evil Ghosts away from the people, it was too late. Only a few shelters remained. Rebecca has to find the last tree, harvest its seeds and make the trees come back. This 1970s children’s book is almost impossible to get hold of now, but its environmental theme is obvious.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this quick guide to magical trees. daFlores.com doesn’t sell whomping willows, fortunately, but we do craft magical flower arrangements with blooms that were growing that very morning. Visit daFlores.com and see for yourself.