The Tallest Tree in the Land

Bill Parrott |

A young ruler wanted a majestic garden with towering trees. He met with his gardener to share his vision. His gardener recommended planting 100 giant Sequoia trees to surround his land. The Sequoia is the most massive tree in the world, fitting for a young ruler. The ruler was pleased with the suggestion, and he authorized the project.

The young ruler checked his garden often. He was not satisfied with his freshly planted trees, especially compared to his friends. He became more frustrated when he saw the beautiful trees they posted on social media. He was jealous and angry.

He approached his gardener, demanding he remove the Sequoias and plant a faster-growing tree. His gardener pleaded with the young ruler to leave the trees alone. Majestic trees take years to mature. If he let them grow, his patience would be rewarded. The young ruler did not care. He wanted faster results.  The gardener reluctantly succumbed to his ruler's request and planted Weeping Willows.

The gardener removed the Sequoias, except for one. He let it stand because the young ruler could not see it from his estate, it would be hidden for years.

After several years, the young ruler left his estate to attend college. When he left, the Weeping Willows matured and looked beautiful. Standing about 35 feet tall, they sprinkled his garden, and he was pleased. He finally had a garden worthy of respect.

The gardener tended the property while the ruler was away, trimming trees, watering plants, and planting seasonal flowers. And, he paid particular attention to the lone Sequoia.

When the ruler finished his studies, he pursued a career as a doctor in another country. While away from his estate, his garden flourished.

While working his rounds, he met a young lady, also a doctor. They married and had several children. He missed his estate and his Weeping Willows, but he loved his life, growing family, and new country.

The children continued to grow and eventually left home to attend college, find jobs, and start their own families.

The ruler was now old and wise. It was time for him to return to his homeland and his beloved estate with his extended family – children, in-laws, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He was excited to showcase his lush garden and majestic Weeping Willows.

As the ruler and his family arrived at the estate, they were in awe of the massive tree looming in the distance. Standing more than 200 feet tall, it towered over his estate and his tiny Weeping Willows. It was visible for miles and commanded admiration and reverence. It was the tallest tree in the land.

The wise ruler approached his gardener, wanting to know when he planted the beautiful tree. The gardener said he planted it when the ruler told him to do so many years ago. He informed the ruler that he let it stand, reminding the ruler it would take years and patience for majestic trees to grow.

The ruler was disappointed in his Weeping Willows. If he had listened to his gardener, he would have hundreds of giant Sequoias and the most fantastic garden in all the land.

Diversified investment portfolios, like majestic Sequoias and beautiful gardens, take time to mature. Be patient.

Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago. ~ Warren Buffett

October 24, 2020

Bill Parrott, CFP®, is the President and CEO of Parrott Wealth Management in Austin, Texas. Parrott Wealth Management is a fee-only, fiduciary, registered investment advisor firm. Our goal is to remove complexity, confusion, and worry from the investment and financial planning process so our clients can pursue a life of purpose. Our firm does not have an asset or fee minimum, and we work with anybody who needs financial help regardless of age, income, or asset level. PWM's custodian is TD Ameritrade, and our annual fee starts at .5% of your assets and drops depending on the level of your assets.

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