Concerns over the wilful destruction of the world’s main source of oxygen may be premature, as Rodell Clarke (43) has planted a new ‘Forest Pansy’ in his front garden. Measuring 5m fully grown, Mr Clarke’s Cercis Canadensis is the perfect size to offset 477,698,000 hectares of Brazilian eco-system.
While President Jair Bolsonaro supports the agricultural and mining industry’s deforestation, Mr. Clarke is confident that his deciduous shrub will maintain the Earth’s delicate balance of biodiversity. Also, he explained: ‘It’s striking purple foliage, turns a lovely shade of bronze in the Autumn.’
The Amazon represents half of the planet’s rainforests with an estimated 390 billion individual trees divided into 16,000 species, but Mr. Clarke’s tree has a garden gnome in close proximity – so there is not much to choose. If anything, the ‘Forest Pansy’ offers bright-pink flowers in the Spring, shade for sleeping cats during the Summer and a showcase for fairy lights in the Winter.
Some say the rainforest is nature’s medicine cabinet, responsible for two-thirds of all cancer cures, but Mr. Clarke claims his shrub is a great cure for hiccups. He explained: ‘You can always grow a new rainforest but a good rockery doesn’t happen by chance. Over time I’m sure my pansy will store just as much carbon – but I wouldn’t hold my breath’.