The arborvitae is an ancient symbol, which become its name in France 'l'arbre de vie' by the following history. The French explorer Jacques Cartier was returned in 1536 with young plants of this conifer after a harsh winter in Canada on Lawrence River. The French king had ordered him to investigate the western side of the river. With his companions, he had ascended the river and not returned on time, so when winter came, the ship got stuck in the ice, near what is now the city Montreal. During the wintering crew members were increasingly ill. Some would even be deceased. He kept it hidden from the tribe of the Iroquois on the shore. They were not sick and Cartier discovered that she drank a concoction of Thuja occidentalis.