A cherry tree that inspired award-winning Canadian author Joy Kogawa was damaged in a fierce windstorm that swept across southern British Columbia. The backyard tree is the focus of Kogawa’s children’s book “Naomi’s Tree”, which became a symbol of her desire to return home after she and thousands of other Japanese Canadians were interned during the Second World War.
The old cherry tree is diseased and can’t be saved, but a new cherry tree will be planted in almost the same location, using a cutting from the original. Grafts from the beloved tree are also planted at Vancouver City Hall and other locations in Vancouver. And artists, from carvers to papermakers, are being urged to use the wood to create items suitable for auction to support programs at Kogawa House.