Man and Trees-Plum tree

Man and Trees-Plum tree

Taiwan’s first of its kind documentary series “Memoirs of the Tress” introduces the migration of the “Hakka” people by documenting the trees seen and used in their everyday lives. Through three specific species that the Hakka ancestors relied on – the plum tree, tallow tree, and chaste tree, we are able to explore the history of the interaction between trees and humans for the past thousands of years. 
On New Year’s Day every year, going up the mountains to marvel at the plum blossom is an important activity for the Taiwanese. This kind of artificially cultivated green plum appeared 3,000 years ago at the latest. There are many songs about plums in the Book of Songs, indicating that during the Zhou Dynasty, the green plum was a common fruit tree. About 1700 years ago, due to mixed reasons such as the collapse of the ruling bureau and climate turmoil, our ancestors moved southward, and the green plum was brought along to the Yangtze River basin; hundreds of years later, the Yellow Nest Uprising urged the ancestors to flock into the Ling-nan area. The green plum then flourished in the Pearl River basin; in the late years of the Ming dynasty and the early years of the Qing dynasty, with Zheng Cheng-Gong arriving in Taiwan, the green plum set foot in Taiwan and spread along the central mountain range. Due to the limitation of climate and soil, Taiwan’s green plums are almost always grown at moderate to high altitudes, which is also where many Hakka settlements reside. Since the green plum share similar historical footprints with the Hakka people, what does the green plum represent in their hearts?



Runtime 00:48:25

Directed by
Chen Chiao-wei