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What is it about abandoned places that elicit such a sense of fascination and wonder? Especially when that place has begun the process of going back to nature, its architectural elements slowly being enveloped by the wildlife it previously encroached upon. Nicknamed “abandoned porn,” people love to look at pictures of places crumbling to the sheer will of the natural world around it, soon to be lost to time, and we’re no exception.

Apparently, the good folks over at NPR are no exception either as they’ve dedicated an entire hashtag on social media to this called #nprcitites. Listeners can send in their pics of animals, trees or other elements of the natural world taking over urban environments. The images are sometimes funny, sometimes thought-provoking and always fascinating. We, as humans, so often think of the things that we build as eternal, but the awesome power and enduring spirit of nature proves time and time again that people, and the stuff we build are kind of insignificant in the grand scheme of things.

It also demonstrates that – if you sit still long enough – a tree might eat you, but that’s an entirely separate discussion. With so many submissions, we could literally spend all day looking at the amazing blends of nature vs. urban landscapes! Here are just a few of our favorites.


Remember that tree that ate a kid in the movie Poltergeist? This tree in Feldsmere Park in Malden, Massachusetts remembers.


This tree in King George V Memorial Park in Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong got the memo too.


In west Philidelphia, born and raised, lived a tree who met a fence and was completely unfazed.


Does it look like this tree in Ngong Ping, Hong Kong is just nonchalantly resting its elbow on the window sill of that abandoned house? Like its all, “Sup, guys? This is my house now.”


Is this a house in Benton Park West in St. Louis, MO or a place from the Harry Potter world that we need a spell to get into? 


 This car on the Delaware River shore in Bridesburg, Philidelphia is gonna need some work if it ever hopes to go anywhere again. Maybe a new catalytic converter? Tough to say.


Either this tree was really determined to grow in that spot, fence be damned, or it’s made out of that stuff the guy from Terminator 2 was made out of.


You think this Peacock in Oviedo, Florida just wants to know what kind of mileage this car gets?


So, as it turns out, trees are the goats of the plant world.



Lead Image: Vaux’s Swifts roosting in September in the Chapman School chimney in Portland, Oregon.

Lead Image source: Mark Stalcup/flicker