The first centenarian to have a tree planted in her honour at the National Botanical Gardens at Waterford, St. Michael, is the Late Delphine “Clytie” Goodman, who was born on October 19, 1918, and died on August 16, 2020.
Minister of Environment and National Beautification, Adrian Forde, and her first granddaughter, Dolores Doughty, today planted a golden apple tree (spondias cytherea) as a “living tribute to her memory”.
Speaking on the importance of recommitting to Government’s mantra of taking care of the most vulnerable groups in the society, Minister Forde said: “One of the most important things that would identify if we are able to pass that litmus test is not only how we treat to those in the dawn of their lives – our young people – but equally how we treat to those in the twilight of their years, the elderly.”
Lamenting that “Clytie” passed on August 16, and the planting could not have been done in her presence, he paid homage to her family, noting that there would have been fond memories of her, and they would have benefitted from her agricultural skills and the produce she made from golden apples.
“You would have understood that the old persons in this community recognised of course the value of the land and the plants,” Mr. Forde said, adding that the golden apple tree would have sustained her over the years and “Clytie”, like all other elderly folk, would have imparted the notion of hard work to a lot of young persons in her community.
Meanwhile, Project Manager of the National Botanical Gardens, Nigel Jones, emphasising that it was regrettable “Clytie” was not alive to see “the tree of her life being planted, a tree that sustained her for about 10 decades and more,” said it was to be planted in February, but a number of things prevented it, including the COVID-19 pandemic.
A bench, donated to the family of the late Delphine “Clytie” Goodman, was also unveiled in the National Botanical Gardens and is situated close to the golden apple tree.