The greatest long-livers on earth are relict trees. Man dies, palaces collapse, dynasties fade into oblivion, eras replace each other, the earth's topography changes - and only big trees stand in their former place, silently greeting spring and seeing off summer, having long ago lost count of their years. Some of them have already turned into stone monuments, lying on the ground, with wood harder than granite, have become covered with legends, tales, and touching beliefs of people in their miraculous properties.

There are many long-living trees in Uzbekistan, the oldest of them nearly two thousand years old is juniper in Kyzylsu Nature Reserve.  Compared to it, other famous trees are still quite small.

The walking stick of Hazrat Bahauddin

When Bahauddin Naqshbandi was returning to his native Bukhara from Mecca, on the way home he had a wonderful dream - he appeared to Hazrat Ibrahim on a white luminous cloud. Ibrahim asked the pilgrim what he was carrying with him from Mecca. Bahauddin showed him his treasures: a jar of holy water, a rosary (tasbih), and a mulberry walking stick that had served him faithfully on his long journey home.

Hazrat Ibrahim said: "When you arrive at your native Qasr-e-Orifan, there at your mother's sarcophagus you will find that which the heavens have bestowed upon you for your holiness. After praying over this stone, you shall distribute the bones of tasbih to your faithful disciples, who will carry your teachings to other lands, and stick the staff into the ground, near your heart, let it turn into a mighty tree and tell people about your hajj to Mecca for many centuries".

Hazrat Bahauddin did so - stuck his stick in the ground, and after a while, it turned green and grew into a huge tree, which stood near the reservoir for many centuries.  The staff is now lying on a pedestal near the house, almost invisible by day because of the pilgrims who crowded around it in the hope of nibbling at least a tiny chip for the tumor - a talisman.  For many years the stick is polished to a shine with hands, pilgrims put money in its curves, tie ribbons and crawl almost on their knees under its branches. All these actions are believed to bring good luck and the intercession of the Saint.  Orthodox Muslims do not approve of this paganism, nor do the custodians of the mausoleum, but they do not discourage it. Manifestations of faith in a secular country are a private matter for everyone. All the more so, charged with confidence in the help of Hazrat, people become stronger, many it really helps to overcome their difficulties. It is psychology ...

Magical mulberry tree of Makhdum-i Azam.

Not far from Samarkand there is a complex of Makhdum-i Azam.  Here is buried the Great Master Ahmad Hajagi ibn Jamaladdin Kasani Dagbidi, Makhdum-i Azam, scholar, theologian, active follower, and continuer of Bahauddin Naqshbandi's ideas.

His ancestors were respected people - "saids" - that is, descendants of the Prophet. A farmer and a gardener, he led a very modest life, wrote more than 30 works in philosophy, geology, law - some of them are called "Majmuat ul-Risola". He owned the daring, for the time, statement: "Not man was created for religion, but religion for man".

Like all Sufis, Makhdum-i Azam was a miracle worker, although he could probably repeat after Hazrat Bahauddin his words that the greatest miracle is that ...burdened with so many sins, I still walk the earth. Wonderworkers are immensely demanding of themselves.

And the miracle, as we understand it, happened with the tree that grows on the compound. Huge and four-stemmed, it is about 600 years old, but it is still covered with leaves, despite the huge hollow in its roots.  According to legend, this tree was carried by the power of thought by the Awliya from Iran.

While praying, Makhdum-i Azam punished his disciples not to open their eyes. But one disciple still disobeyed. And he found himself, having opened his eyes, in a gloomy Iranian prison. The guards ran to the prisoner's cries, and they brought the demon-possessed prisoner to the Shah of Iran. The apprentice tried to explain what was happening, which amused the Iranian lord. He ordered the "liar" to be tied to a tree, scornfully remarking: "If your Sheikh is so all-powerful, let him take you back..."  There was no murid or tree in the place in the morning, only a hole from the roots...

It is said that the shocked Iranian Shah willed to bury himself at the feet of Hazrat. You will even be shown his grave. And the Iranian mulberry tree still grows to this day, surprising with its unusual shape and size.

The Pistachio Tree of the Prophet Daniel

Perhaps one of the most famous trees in Uzbekistan. Moreover, there is a miracle associated with it that we have all been able to observe and bear witness to. The pistachio bush, which for over 500 years stood guard near the tomb of Daniel in Samarkand, had long since ceased to flower, was withered and dead. It was even about to be removed as useless dry brushwood.

In 1996, in November, the Holy Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church Alexy II visited Samarkand and performed a real miracle. He sprinkled holy water on the tree and prayed. And in the spring the pistachio tree came to life and was covered with flowers and leaves. The whole of Samarkand talked about this amazing event, rejoicing, marveling, taking pictures of the tree as a memento. It was like the legends of staffs stuck in the ground and growing into trees that could now be believed. Hundreds of pilgrims came and went to see the miraculous tree, from Uzbekistan and around the world.

Before the death of the Patriarch, the ancient pistachio tree did not blossom. Samarkand inhabitants believed and hoped that maybe it would blossom later, maybe it would revive, but they never waited. And after a while, everyone realized the essence of this sign, when from Moscow came the news about the death of the Patriarch.

The tree, revived by Alexey II, died, foretelling the departure of His Holiness. Now it stands, fenced with ribbons, and who knows, maybe one day we will see flowers on it again? And realize that something happened in the world, something very important and miraculous. And we will wait for confirmation.

The crest of Anbar-ona.

Fifteen kilometers from Tashkent there is Zangiota mausoleum, built by Amir Temur in honor of the disciple of Ahmad Yassavi, Zangiota, the Black Hodja.  There is a sepulcher of his wife Anbar-ona on the territory of the complex, and many legends are connected to her name among the people.  Near her mausoleum grows an unusual tree, and even scientists have difficulty naming its species. It is shaped like an ancient crest with dozens of fan-like trunks diverging from a single strong root. According to the legend it grew from a crest of Anbar-ona that a woman accidentally dropped. It doesn't bear flowers and fruits but every year it is covered with stiff roundish leaves. Despite the prudent construction of a fence around the tree, a ribbon from a grateful pilgrim can still be seen on its branches. It is believed that the tree is able to fulfill the most cherished wishes of women.

Long-livers trees

Of course, in the cities of Uzbekistan, relict trees are no more than 600 years old. If it were not for the raids of invaders and fires that accompanied the life of eastern cities, perhaps older trees, such as those that grow in nature reserves, would have survived. Nevertheless, the age of many of the "living elders" is admirable.

Around Lyabi Hauz in Bukhara grow mulberry trees, bizarre and huge, their bark resembling the skins of prehistoric animals, many of them have iron supports. Beside each is a plaque with the age of the tree in three languages.

Similarly huge and majestic trees near Hauz stand in the Khoja Abdi Birun Ensemble, in Samarkand. The Abdi Birun Memorial is one of the largest khazir complexes in Central Asia; it includes a khonakokh and a burial courtyard. There are seven large trees growing around the Hauz.

Chinara, juniper, elm (Karagach), sycamore, oriental biota - relatively young, about 450 years old, spread throughout the country, they give a dense lush crown, bloom, and give new shoots.