The plastic magnet tree

I was taking my morning walk at a very scenic place where the air was fresh, trees flanked the road, and birds flitted here and there. There was an overall sense of peace. Of vastness, of nature at its gentlest, relaxed. Here are some pictures.

nice morning walk scenenice morning walk scenenice morning walk scene

And then, I spotted a tree that looked different.

From a distance, I thought some sort of unusual fruit was hanging off the branches. Then I went closer and realized those weren’t large fruit, nor were they nests; they were plastic bags. Apparently people had flung garbage (tied in plastic bags). Why target this tree? Was there something special about it? I stood there for a while, but found nothing different about that tree, in terms of its type, size, or location. No religious symbols nearby, that could imply these were plastic wrapped offerings to the gods. No sign saying, “please throw your waste here.” The tree looked like the trees near it, except for the plastic bags hanging off it.

tree with plastic bagstree with plastic bags

A few months later, passing by the same route, I noticed a few more plastic bags hanging on the tree, and also some plastic bags hanging off the lower branches of a neighboring tree.

This is what I suspect: someone flung the first plastic bag, or maybe a bunch of them, maybe from a bus or car or while walking past. And now, once in a while, when people who have seen this tree are walking nearby and they have a bag they want to dispose, they throw it here because the tree has already been “marked.”

I call this the plastic magnet tree.

There is, of course, no garbage bin around. Not needed, I guess, because there is this tree.

2 thoughts on “The plastic magnet tree”

  1. Trees close to the river banks everywhere now suffer this phenomenon post monsoon. The trees are normally submerged during the initial surge of flood water and the plastic bags carried by the stream get caught in the branches and remain after the waters recede.

  2. You have a point. Of course, it is a pity that there are plastic bags in streams, and that’s an area of concern 🙂

    However, this tree is nowhere near any stream or any water source, and is one tree in the middle of a lot of trees, just another tree on the roadside…(except for its attraction to plastic)

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