New growth. Old redwood.

By Anita Garner

Christmas Amaryllis, 2012

Years ago, after the holiday decorations were put away, I planted this Christmas gift and here’s what I posted that day.

“This Amaryllis took up a spot on my harvest table over by the kitchen window where it appears to be content.  This seems significant somehow.”

Today I planted my new Amaryllis.

Christmas Amaryllis 2020

New bulb.  Same old dearly beloved redwood table. In the first picture, the table was in the kitchen.  The red pot this year is on the same table, which is now my office desk.  Everything old and familiar seems friendlier and comforting these days.

The table was made by a carpenter in Bolinas, CA who collected old, fallen redwood and aged it. If you knew a friend of a friend of his in Marin County, sometimes he could be persuaded to turn the redwood into something  you requested.  First you indicated what you’d like.  He would decide if it was something he wanted to make.  Then you waited while he traveled, chasing waves up and down the coast, until he returned to wherever he parked his van.  After a while, a price quote came through the grapevine. Then you waited again until he felt the wood was right and until he was in a woodworking mood.

Months later, a friend of a friend delivered a rustic and slightly smoothed, beautiful hunk of history.  New winter bulbs thrive in proximity to this old growth.





2 thoughts on “New growth. Old redwood.”

  1. A rare skill to make the story of having a table built so interesting. A wonderful story! As a guitar player and collector, I am fascinated by different types of wood and how they are “harvested.”

    Because if its rarity, I have seen very few redwood guitars. The few I’ve seen are beautiful and have a very rich sound. Your table must be stunning!

    As always, I do enjoy your writing. Thank you for sharing this one with us!

  2. Steve, thanks for reading and for your thoughts. Your guitar collection must feature some beautiful woods. Redwood speaks to me. When I heard about this carpenter who had some old redwood, I was willing to wait as long as it took. The table is covered with work now but I’ll post a picture of it one day. It’s just two planks deep, but they’re extra wide pieces. X-shaped base at either end. After the Bolinas carpenter took off, a Mill Valley craftsman added a bit of reinforcing underneath so it should last forever.

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