Most health-conscious people, especially parents, are on high alert when it comes to what they eat or feed others, especially children, now that genetically modified organisms (GMOs) have been linked to many health issues through independent studies. It is also safe to say that some of these people are taking a stand in ways Monsanto, the company responsible for GMOs, never expected.
The Inquisitr reported on such news in which last year, Maui County in Hawaii actually voted to ban GMOs from being grown. And just this year, Zen Honeycutt, the founder of Moms Across America, was able to speak directly to Monsanto’s shareholders about the dangers of GMOs.
In general, genetic modification is a fickle science that seems to have caused many issues for mankind. So when people hear about the newest genetically modified hybrid, they get concerned. For example, the organic community would be shocked to hear about “The Tree of Forty Fruits,” which is a tree that grows, well, 40 fruits. However, they’ll be more surprised to find out it is not genetically modified.
According to Science Alert, Sam Van Aken, a Syracuse University art professor, was pursuing a career in the arts when he heard an orchard at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station was close down due to lack of funding. This single orchard grew a great number of heirloom, antique, and native varieties of stone fruit, and some of the trees were 150 to 200 years old. If this orchard were to be shut down, rare and old varieties of fruit would go extinct. Memories of Van Aken’s childhood on a family farm must have touched his heart because he purchased the orchard just to save the fruits. However, his artistic drive would also take hold in which he would create a true masterpiece: “The Tree of Forty Fruits.”
Take note that Sam Van Aken isn’t a genetics expert, meaning he couldn’t have genetically modified The Tree of Forty Fruits into fruition. However, Van Aken does have farming knowledge and utilized natural means to create it. In a follow-up article by Expanded Consciousness, Van Aken used the age-old farming method of grafting. Working with a pool of over 250 varieties of stone fruits, a timeline was developed when each of them blossomed in relationship to the other. Initially, it began with a few grafts for the tree’s root structure followed by chip grafting of other fruit trees when the tree reached the age of two years.
The final product is The Tree of Forty Fruits. During springtime, it reveals a beautiful patchwork of pink, white, red, and purple blossoms. Eventually, the blossoms will evolve into an array of plums, peaches, apricots, nectarines, cherries, and almonds during the summer months. All of them are rare and unique varieties.
If you want to learn more about Sam Van Aken’s Tree of Forty Fruits, a video of his TEDx Talk is attached below for your viewing. Afterwards, let everyone know what you think about this unique way of mixing gardening ingenuity with artistic endeavor.
[Featured Image via Sam Van Aken]