A Palm Grows in Nederland?

palm treeMark Cohen, Nederland.   The time has come. Let’s face it – Nederland winters are long and brutal. A little wind in October can make for a cozy evening, but by the time May rolls around, I’m done with the wind, and the snow. I get that we live 8,236 feet above sea level, and it’s nice not to have to use my refrigerator between October and May, but by the time May rolls around, I’m done with the cold.

I guess I’m more of summer person. I love Nederland summers. While folks down below endure 95 degree days, we can count on a balmy 72 degrees. I can wear shorts, a t-shirt, and flip-flops. Listen to Jimmy Buffet and drink margaritas. Maybe even take a quick dip in Barker Reservoir if the fuzz ain’t around. It’s like Hawaii without the palm trees. Which brings me to the topic of this week’s column.

I want a palm tree in Nederland this summer, and not just any palm tree. I want a forty foot tall Canary Island Date Palm in the traffic circle by June 1st.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Your thinking, “Why in the name of God does Barb let some washed up lawyer who thinks Jack Daniels is a food group write a column for the Mountain-Ear?” I have no clue, but hear me out.

Nederland is losing millions of dollars in revenue each year because tourists don’t view Nederland as beach destination. Nederland is basically dead between the time Frozen Dead Guy Days ends and the Fourth of July. Nobody visits Nederland during that time, except to buy pot.

I’m telling you, folks, we’ve got big trouble right here in Cannabis City.

Nederland’s gotta have a palm tree and I mean she needs it today. Trouble. I’m talkin’ ‘bout trouble, with a capital ‘T’ and that rhymes with ‘P’ and that stands for palm.

Oh, think my friends, how could any poker table ever hope to compete with a Canary Island Palm?  Remember, my friends, what a handful of palm trees did to the famous, fabled streets of Los Angeles.  Oh, a palm will do it, my friends, oh, yes! I say a Canary Island Palm Tree, do you hear me? Well, Nederland’s gonna have a palm tree. As sure as the Lord made little green apples, and that palm’s gonna be tall and strong, and you’ll see the leaves swaying in the breeze. You’ll hear the thunder of people stopping to get their photos taken beside the HIGHEST PALM TREE IN THE WORLD; the shimmer of car horns honking! You’ll feel something akin to the electric thrill I once enjoyed when Gilmore, Liberatti, Pat Conway, The Great Creatore, W.C. Handy, and John Philip Sousa all came to Nederland on the very same historic day.

Now, I can already hear the same tired old liberal arguments from the lame stream media and the secular humanists – a palm tree will die when winter comes. Always with the negative waves.

Folks, I didn’t just pick the Canary Island Palm Tree out of my big, hairy Trump. I earned a Masters in Law degree in Agricultural Law! There are more than 2,600 species of palm trees on earth, but the CIPT is perfect for Nederland. The CIPT can tolerate temperatures down to 14 degrees and has been grown as far north as England.

Sure, it will probably die by mid-December, but what a glorious summer we will enjoy. With tourists flocking to Nederland to enjoy the new Margaritaville festival and get their photos taken with THE HIGHEST PALM TREE IN THE WORLD, we can easily afford to remove the dead palm tree each winter and plant a new CIPT each summer.

Why, some may say, a palm tree? Why choose this as our goal? They may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas? We choose to bring a palm tree to Nederland in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.

I’ve done the research. It will cost between $10,000.00 and $15,000.00 to bring a Canary Island Palm Tree to Nederland. That is why I have established a GoFundMe campaign called A Palm Grows in Nederland. I’m not taking money from Wall Street or the Koch Brothers. I can’t be bought. If you’d like to see a palm tree in Nederland this summer, please make your contribution at https://www.gofundme.com/apalmgrowsinned

With your help and by God’s grace, when June rolls around we’ll be nibblin’ on sponge cake, watchin’ the sun bake, and all of those tourists will be covered in oil.

Mark Cohen

Mark Cohen, J.D., LL.M., is a lawyer in Nederland, Colorado. He is also the author of the Pepper Keane mystery series. A former chairperson of the editorial board of The Colorado Lawyer magazine, one of his interests is the use of Plain English rather than legal jargon.

One thought on “A Palm Grows in Nederland?

  • February 15, 2016 at 09:36
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    Hey Mark,
    I don’t think it’s a crazy idea at all. Some palms such as the Beaked Yuka can survive temperatures down to -25F so it’s quite possible to get a cold hardy palm in your area. The beaked yuka though probably isn’t best for what you’re looking to do with it. Another species of date palm to look at is the Senegal date, grows in cluster form perfect for center pieces. It can survive temps down to 20F.

    Here’s some more info on the different types of palms if you’re interested too (http://palmtreesforsaleonline.com/). Good luck, I think it’ll be a nice addition to the property.

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