In Ireland, fairy trees or bushes are considered sacred rendez-vous points for the wee folk of the neighbourhood. And the Irish take fairy trees very seriously. They deck them with toys, ribbons, fabric from their clothes, messages and prayers scrawled on scraps of paper. In 1999, a County Clare fairy tree was incorporated into plans for a motorway bypass when a folklorist warned of terrible consequences if the tree was destroyed.
Last summer, the ancient apple tree in our backyard died, but I couldn’t bear to part with its lovely sinewy skeleton. I’m in the process of turning it into our own magical fairy tree, trimmed with things I love, including birdhouses. At Christmas, I may add lights.
All to keep the wee folk happy!