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A Tree

There was a man who owned vast acres of land and had many different trees and plants that gave fruit. The man was proud of his achievements and became wealthy with all the vegetation he sold. His heart was at ease as he walked through one of his gardens. He viewed everything around him and smiled; however, it did not last long until he came to the edge of his property and came upon his neighbor’s yard. He stood looking at it, and the land was bare except for a lone tree planted in the middle of the field. The man laughed to himself and saw his neighbor coming with a bucket of water on a cart.

“Good morning.” His neighbor called out to him. “How are you doing young sir?”

“Fine.” The man’s eyes moved around his neighbor’s yard. “I see that you still have only one tree. Tell me, why put so much energy into one when you can plant many and become rich as me.”

“It’s true that I only have one and if I plant others, I would have many but to put one’s effort into many will produce tasteless food.”

The man was puzzled then he laughed. “I see you still your sense of humor. Very well, enjoy your life with your lone tree.”

They both said goodbye and went on their way. As the time for the harvest came, the man stood by one of his stands and was pleased with the sales he was making. However, he got wind that his neighbor was selling well too and many want his peach. The man was curious about it and went to buy one, but his pride got in the way and did not want to be seen disparate. So, he went to his house and disguised himself. Afterward, he walked over to the neighbor’s stand and asked what he was selling.

“Peaches. I have plenty so buy whatever you want.” He smiled.

“I see but your neighbor also sells peaches, and he has more.”

“True, but mine are sweeter. Here, try a sample.” He cut a piece and handed it to the man. He took one bit, and his eyes were enlightened with the taste. The man had never eaten a peach like it before, so he devoured it and asked for another. His neighbor laughed and cut another piece. “So, it seems you love them.”

“Love them? This is incredible.” The man gazed at the peaches. “Tell me, what is your secret?”

“Ah, there is no secret. Anyone who plants and cultivates knows how to care for one.”

“But this taste different let me buy a case from you.”

“Of course.” He gave the man a case.

“Thank you.”

The man quickly ran back to his home and called out to his wife. She came running to him and asked why he was so frantic.

“Here try one.”

His wife gazed at the fruit. There was nothing special about it, but she grabbed it to please her husband. As she took a bite, her eyes became bright and quickly ate all of it.

“Oh my, I never ate one so sweet and delicious. From which tree did you take it off?”

“Sadly, it is not any of our trees but from the neighbor.” The man sighed.

“What?” The man’s wife walked over to a window and stared at the lone tree planted in the middle of the field. “That is impossible. How could his tree produce such delightful fruits?’

“I asked him the same question, and he only told me that he cares for it and nothing more. But I think he uses something to do it and won’t share his secret.”

“Then you must find this secret so our trees can produce the same wonderful fruits.”

The next day, the man viewed the field to see if his neighbor was around, but he was not there, so the man leaped over the fence and walked towards the tree. The branches had not more peaches only leaves and around the bark was just a small fence. The soil was ordinary and moist. Everything seemed reasonable, and the man could not wrap his head on how the tree could make delicious peaches. He examined everything, and when there was nothing else, he returned home. As he climbed over the fence, the neighbor’s wife came out with a can of water. The man quickly ducked and gazed at the woman. She walked over to the tree and poured the water around it then kneeled down and patted the soil. She pulled out a few weeds near it and covered the holes then left. The man wondered if the water she used had the secret. He quickly ran to the front of the neighbor’s house and knocked on the door. The woman answered and greeted the man with a smile.

“Oh, good morning.” She bowed her head.

“Morning. May I bother you with a problem?”

“Um, what type of problem?”

“You see,” the man entered the house. “I would like to know how you make a peach pie. I want to surprise my wife as her birthday is coming up soon.”

“Oh, that is so nice of you. Come with me, and I will give you a recipe.”

He followed the woman to the kitchen and sat down as she searched for the recipe. While she was busy, the man looked around and noticed a strange jar on top of a cabinet. He glanced over at the woman who was keeled down and searching inside a bookcase, so the man quietly walked over to the cupboard and grabbed the jar then looked inside, however, it was empty and had the scent of mint. The man placed it back and sat down just as the woman stood with a book in her hands.

“Here is one that your wife will love.”

“Oh thank. By the way, may I ask why you only have one tree and how is it that you produce such tasteful fruit?”

“My husband cares for it, and as a result, we get good peaches. I made a drink from one of them, would you like to try it?”

“Of course.” The man smiled.

The woman poured a cup and handed it to him. He drank it and was startled to taste it. He could not believe it and wondered if what they were doing was just that caring for a tree.

“So, did you like it?”

“Huh? Oh yes, it was very delicious and thank you.”

The man returned to his home and gazed at all his trees, he walked to every one of them and stopped at one that was still young. He lowered himself to it and began to cultivate it. After a while, his wife came by and asked what he found.

“They only treat it with care and nothing more.”

“That is ridiculous. They must be using some type of formula to care the fruits.”

The man gazed at his wife. “Well, whatever it is, I want to give it a try and see if it is true.”

Days and months went by, and the man had his entire attention to that one tree, and when it came for harvesting, he plucked a peach and bit into it. His eyes brightened, and he smiled to himself as he gazed at all the others.

“They were right. Raise it with care and love and good fruit would come from it.”