Nature Field Note

ryan d

My school in the 1950s

ryan c

My school after WWII

Title: What do we see in nature?

Abstract: Because Milan is a big city.  Pigeons, dogs, and cats are some of the types of animals I see here on a regular basis.  Although Milan does not have as much wild life and nature as other cities of the world, there are beautiful trees all over the city that flank the sides of streets, on sidewalks, and in man-made parks.  Read here to find out about my favorite type of tree in Milan.

Intro: Milan is a big city.  There are many cars, streets, and people.  There are not many fields of green grass or woods, nor many wild animals, though there are parks.  When Milan became an industrial city it was transformed into an urban landscape.  You can find many factories and office buildings here. One of these buildings is my University, the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart.  This University is home to something beautiful produced by nature though, a wonderfully large tree! Since trees take a long time to grow, it is an example of what Milan’s natural environment can produce! Read here to learn more about this tree.

What does this creature or plant look like?

The plant is a tree.  It is a mid-sized tree with dark gray bark and orange leaves. Winter just passed, so all of the leaves have ryan afallen off, but new ones are growing back!

How did I feel when I saw it?

ryan eMilan is a big city so when I saw this big, wonderful tree I was surprised!  There are few trees like this in Milan today.

Where does it live?

This tree lives in the middle of my school’s courtyard.  My school is Universita’ Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, or, in English, the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart.  My school is located in the center of Milan and in walking distance from the city’s major meeting points such as the Duomo, Santa Maria delle Grazie, Castello Sforzesco and the Cadorna Metro Stop.

How does it use its environment to survive?

It uses the sunlight and rainwater from nature.  There are plant managers that come around and water the tree during dry seasons like the summer when it does not rain as much.  There are also sprinklers installed near the tree to ensure that the tree stays hydrated and alive.

What can harm this creature? Are we worried about it?

This tree’s only predators are humans that may chop it down.  I have not seen any wild animals in Milan besides birds like pigeons, so I do not think it is at risk.  This tree is very special to my University so I doubt any humans would chop it down.  It is very special to my University because it is the main focal point of my school’s courtyards.  My school’s courtyards are an important part of my school’s design.  It is so important that it is actually considered bad luck to cross the center of the courtyard.  If a person has to get to the other side of the courtyard, it is recommended that he or she walk around the outside of the courtyard or walk halfway through the courtyard to the center where the tree is then turn right or left down one of the paths, exit the courtyard and walk around the courtyard to the other side.  It sounds really complicated because it is!  I thought it was stupid when I first heard about the superstition, but since it believed that if you disobey this recommendation, you will not graduate, I have decided to obey and bared the extra minutes of walking around the courtyard.

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