Atlas, the titan, was condemned to bear the weight of the world on his shoulders. Now, a statue of Atlas is carrying the weight of the branches of the oldest gum tree in Buenos Aires, replacing one of the concrete columns. The tree, planted in 1781, can be found in Recoleta and is known as the “Gomero de la Recoleta”.
The statue of Atlas is made out of 85% of remnants of cars. The president of Junta Comunal 2, Facundo Carrillo, said: “The statue symbolizes a great man that lifts one of the biggest and heaviest branches of the historic tree and the patrimonial value of the city”.
The Gomero was planted over 218 years ago by Don Martín José de Altoaguirre from a plant that he received from his brother Fray Fernando. Altoaguirre was an agronomist; besides the famous tree he had a huge collection of several species of trees. Nowadays, his collection is still to be visited in the Botanical Garden located in the Palermo neighborhood of Buenos Aires.
The Gomero has grown a lot over the years. The tree has a wingspan of 50m, the trunk has a diameter of 1.5 m, the branches are 28m long and the tree is about 20m high. This species of rubber tree originates from Tropical Asia.