PHOTO OF THE WEEK: MYSTERY GROVE BY JEFF LEE

Mystery Grove, Hampshire College. Photo: Jeff Lee

Jeff Wonders why this grove of trees at Hampshire College grows the way it does. If anyone knows, please use the comments section to help Jeff out.

Our feature,  Photo of the Week, presents each week, a new picture by a local photographer. We invite local photographers to share their photographs here.   Please include a description/caption and an indication of who is to be credited.

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3 thoughts on “PHOTO OF THE WEEK: MYSTERY GROVE BY JEFF LEE

  1. Here’s a hypothesis that seems to fit: When the trees were young, they were all bent to the left (from the camera’s perspective, not politically – despite their location on the Hampshire College campus), perhaps by a windstorm or a heavy snowfall; since they were in a small clearing, and most of the light was from directly above, phototaxis drew their main stems back upward toward the light, accounting for the curves depicted. (What does Cameron think?)

  2. Good theory, Rob. I’ve been thinking along similar lines, except suspecting that the bending is human-made rather than natural. There are a number of Hampshire College artifacts in this area — metal sculptures, paper mache artwork, etc. Could a stand of supple young trees perhaps been bent down with a rope and staked to the ground some years ago? Weathering eventually wore out the rope and it snapped, releasing the now deformed trees to grow skyward again?

    It’s just a theory, but it seems like the kind of thing that a group of free-thinking and creative Hampshire students might do!

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