Husband Plants 6,000 Trees To Honor Deceased Wife, 15 Years Later Photos Reveal His True Motive


Howard Howes lost his wife Janet 17 years ago. In the months that followed, he planted thousands of oak saplings in a six-acre field next to his farmhouse, leaving a heart shaped meadow in the middle in her tribute. The point of the heart is facing Janet’s childhood home.

The secret heart meadow was revealed after 42-year-old Andy Collett, a hot air balloon enthusiast, flew over the woods and saw the heart, capturing it in all its glory.

Speaking of his tribute, 70-year-old Howes said: “I came up with the idea of creating a heart in the clearing of the field after Janet died. I thought it was a great idea – it was a flash of inspiration – and I planted several thousand oak trees. Once it was completed we put a seat in the field, overlooking the hill near where she used to live.”

“I sometimes go down there, just to sit and think about things. It is a lovely and lasting tribute to her which will be here for years,” he added.

Howes owns the 112-acre farm near Wickwar, Gloucestershire. He married Janet in 1962, and she died from heart failure at age 50 in 1995.

The secret heart is only accessible through a track leading up to its tip.

“We got people in especially to do it – there are several thousand trees. We planted large oak trees around the edge of the heart then decided to put a hedge around it too. The heart points towards Wotton Hill, where Janet is from. We plant daffodils in the middle that come up in the spring – it looks great. I go out there from time to time and sit in the seat I created,” Howes said.

“I also flew over it myself about five years ago,” he added.

Speaking of the tremendous discovery, Collett stated: “I have my own balloon and am quite a regular flyer, but this was the most amazing sight I have ever seen from the sky. It was a perfect heart hidden away from view – you would not know it was there.”

“You can just imagine the love story,” he added.