Being outside is an especially important piece of my life – it nourishes and brings comfort to my soul.
Anacortes is such a beautiful place to live! Surrounded by salt-water vistas, lush forests, and ‘old town’ with its 100-year-old towering conifers … no matter where I spend time here … my heart is always happy.
This winter we’ve had some horrific storm events which have impacted our trees; I find myself thinking about these glorious friends of mine, and how they nurture our entire environment.
As I have been out and about on trails, and walking in town, I notice many trees being removed. Which is troubling me.
Some are severely damaged from our winter storms; some are dying of old age and disease and truly do need to be removed.
But others that are removed for purely aesthetic reasons – these are the trees that give me pause. They get me to thinking (and researching) more deeply about how trees impact our ability to live healthily with the environment.
I do understand all trees are not created equal – most are stunningly beautiful; some would be considered a nuisance. So, with that in mind please give thought to some of my mulling’s below.
♣ Trees are habitat to so many, insects, birds, animals and so much more. Trees drop fodder for those insects and critters of the soil, which in turn creates more soil.
♣ Trees also have important in-home values; they add so much to the environment, they help save on energy costs, and they buffer noise pollution.
♣ They are nursemaids for fungi, and bacteria that collects moisture, creating streams and aquifers.
♣ Trees can affect wind patterns that affect rainfall and climate changes, and they affect the temperature of the air which in turns effects all surroundings. Trees also protect against drought and erosion.
♣ They take in carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and provide clean oxygen, for breathing; they also filter water from pollution that filters down from our soils, atmosphere, etc.
♣ Trees are for exploring, climbing, and tire swings … and there’s magic in lying down under them to look up at the design throughout the limbs. Just the music of listening to them sway and protect their habitat is so incredibly soothing!
♣ To me, the tree is an enormously valuable lesson in perseverance; the root systems are amazing as they keep on reaching out for hundreds of years. They’re a complete lifecycle that I marvel at every day.
I am sharing this with you in the hope that the next time you are out and about – and in the company of trees – each of you will pause, take a deep breath, and mull over some of these thoughts. I also hope in having read this piece, you have a deeper appreciation for the trees in your environment and how they impact not only our lives, but the world in which they stand tall and protect.