Friday, July 7, 2017

HIddenLifeOfTrees

I recently read The Hidden Life of Trees:  What They Feel, How They Communicate by Peter Wohlleben (2016).  

Wow!  This book provides a view of trees from the perspective of PW, a German forester, grounded solidly in the most current research.  

My biggest takeaways:
  • Trees are connected to one another below the surface of the ground via a mycelial network, through which they communicate (like having their own internet) and share water/nutrition.
  • "Mother" trees tend to their offspring and other young trees in the neighborhood.  Sound familiar?
  • Trees have an immune system that fires up when attacked by disease or critters.  Sound familiar?
  • Hybridized trees (by human intervention) are often more vulnerable to disease and predation, requiring substantial bolstering by artificial means.  Sound familiar?
  • The richest forests are the ones that have the most diversity.  Sound familiar?
  • Even in death, trees continue to provide powerful sustenance to their offspring.  Sound familiar?
  • Loner, disconnected trees are much more vulnerable to disease and predation than those nestled in a strong and vibrant community of trees.  Sound familiar?
  • For every 1 square yard of forest floor, there is 27 square yards of surface area in the leaves directly above it.  Talk about shade protection and water collection systems!
My favorite quote:
“When you know that trees experience pain and have memories and that tree parents live together with their children, then you can no longer just chop them down and disrupt their lives with large machines.”  (In the Introduction)

Absolutely eye opening.

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