Somewhat surprisingly, trees that grow close together form sociable communities, where they ‘talk’ to each other, share information and look after themselves.
In many cultures and languages, trees – their roots, trunks and branches – carry great narrative significance.
From ancient history to the Middle Ages and beyond, the image of the tree of life has held great symbolism and significance for many cultures.
From the memories of flowers to the sociability of trees, the cognitive capacities of our vegetal cousins are all around us.
Tree bark has many health-related uses – as our ancestors were well-acquainted with. Even hugging a tree can have psychological benefits.
Research explains the positive impact and health benefits of children spending more time in nature.
Witold Szwedkowski, poet and Urban Guerrilla Gardening activist, talks about backyard policy, the spade as a tool of rebellion, and the subversive potential of the pumpkin.
The pine – found in forests, mountains and on shores across much of the northern hemisphere – is a most wonderful tree, evergreen and richly aromatic.
Woodworking is not only a profession – it is also a hobby for those interested in the creative possibilities of wood. It can also have a positive impact on its practitioners’ mental health and wellbeing.
The forest is full of life, not only in the green leaves that burst out of tree crowns, but also underground, where a dense collection of roots and fungi form a communication network.
All around us are magic machines that suck carbon out of the air, cost very little and build themselves. Trees – in all their gorgeous variety and spectacular beauty – can make a massive difference to the world, if we accept one condition: we have to leave fossil fuels in the ground, where they belong.
Up until the mid-19th century, only Native Americans living in the area knew about the existence of Californian sequoias. In 1852, hunter Augustus T. Dowd came across 92 huge specimens. Speculators immediately became interested in the Calaveras County sequoias. The first of them, dubbed the “Giant Tree”, was cut down on 27th June 1853.
An encounter with an ancient oak tree named Bartek, as experienced and retold by a biologist and poet. Original text by Urszula Zajączkowska.
Our ancestors lived in trees millions of years ago. Perhaps that’s why humans seem intent on returning to them. Original publication by Łukasz Stępnik.