Sherman Library & Gardens ‘Wishing Tree’ taking requests from those who dare to dream

There are many ways to convey a wish. Shooting stars, four-leaf clovers, and throwing pennies into fountains. But if you’re short on Lucky Tokens, look no further than Shaman Library & Gardens.

Staff set up a Wishing Tree so that visitors to the Corona del Mar Botanical Garden can write their heartfelt wishes and wishes on cards and tie them to the branches of the California pepper tree.

According to library director Jill Thrasher, the tradition began ten years ago during the site’s annual 1,000 Lights Night holiday event as a way for people to welcome the New Year. It dates back thousands of years and is found in many cultures.

“It ties in with the holiday season, Santa’s wishlist, and what people are looking forward to next year,” Thrasher said. “Some are for things, some are for health and happiness, and some are really sad. Whatever it is, we leave it.”

On Fridays, a message hangs on the Wishing Tree, a California pepper tree in the Sherman Library and Gardens.

(Don Leach / Staff Photographer)

Initially, a Japanese maple tree near the garden’s conservatory served as a wish vault. However, the response from visitors was so great that wishes overwhelmed the humble maple and a new wishing tree had to be found.

Stately California pepper tree — Lawrence and Pauline Lushbaugh (planted by Lawrence Lushbaugh in 1938) were former landlords of the site’s historic adobe home and a builder, he seems well-suited for the job and has successfully fulfilled his wishes over the past few years.

Nestled among branches and ears and tied with gold ribbons, wishes can be humorous, describe a new car or winning the lottery, or be ambitious, symbolizing health, recovery, salvation, and life. Some constitute affectionate pleas for

Hope pop pop wins at the casino. I wish for peace on earth. This year’s Charcoal or White Toyota 4Runner TRD Offroad. sleepy. Peace to Ukraine. Younger brother! May 2023 be a better year.

A drizzle in Newport Beach on Friday ruined Clara Girgis’ plans to go hiking with a group of college friends, instead taking them to Sherman Gardens and the base of a majestic pepper tree. Very few are unique.

From left to right, Clara Girgis, Mila Sadek, Merna Farmie and Mira Farmie write down their wishes near the Wishing Tree in Sherman Gardens on Friday.

From left to right, Clara Girgis, Mila Sadek, Merna Farmie and Mira Farmie write down their wishes near the Wishing Tree in Sherman Gardens on Friday.

(Sarah Cardinale)

“Really cute,” said the 22-year-old Mira Loma resident of the exhibit. “Especially at the end of the year, I think it’s good to see what other people want and put your hopes on the tree.”

Girgis personally hoped to be accepted into a school program for physician assistants. Her friend Merna Fahmy, 20, also wanted to interview for a similar school program.

The 21-year-old, who lives in La Palma, told her sister Joy and friend Mira Sadek, “I would love to come back and see if my wishes come true.”

Visitors read dozens of messages in the Wishing Tree.

Visitors read dozens of messages about personal and global dreams on Friday at the Wishing Tree at Sherman Library & Gardens.

(Don Leach / Staff Photographer)

“Maybe we’ll know by the end of the year,” Gilgis said of the fate of his academic ambitions. “Should we come back?”

“Yeah, I’ll be back with you,” Farmie said.

According to Thrasher, who personally cut out 8,000 wish cards, the Wishing Tree will be up and running until at least January 25, accepting requests for those who dare to dream. It seems like a whimsical endeavor, but it’s also an exercise in hope, she added.

“You never know where a wish will go,” she said.

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