New lease of life for Anne Franks tree?

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Anne Frank’s chestnut tree could yet be restored to its former glory. The trunk of the diseased tree, felled in a storm last year, is now alive with new shoots, one of which will hopefully grow into a fully-fledged tree.

From her World War Two hiding place with her family, Anne Frank looked out on the chestnut tree between 1942 and 1944. She describes the tree three times in her famous diary and it came to have a symbolic significance as part of her story.

But as the years passed, the tree was weakened by an aggressive fungus and was blown over on 23 August 2010, despite repeated attempts to keep it standing.

Now all that remains is the trunk which has sprouted around 30 fresh shoots, now around 2.5 metres long. Their future will depend on whether they can withstand the fungus that ultimately felled the tree Anne knew and loved.

It’s still too soon to tell, but Ton Stokwielder, the head of the Wereldboom Foundation which has devoted itself to the tree’s welfare, is optimistic. He thinks there is “a good chance” that a mighty chestnut tree will eventually rise again.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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