Trees are more than ‘giant statues’ but rather the lungs of the planet, which also give home to wildlife the world over. They prevent floods, cool us down, reduce crime and offer shelter. Yet trees are chopped down to build books, furniture, houses and even HS2 fast train that won’t get used, and won’t even prevent climate change (England’s most loved pear was recently flattened, after standing regally in Warwickshire for over 200 years).
If planting trees, see toxic plants to avoid near pets (also avoid cocoa/pine/rubber mulch and fresh compost near pets). Fruit trees & pips are toxic to pets, as are many trees (including oaks with acorns and yew) to horses. Never grow indoor trees/foliage near windows, to help stop birds flying into windows.
Think Like a Tree is a book on how we can apply the wisdom of the natural world, to our own lives. This book reveals the underlying principles of how trees have evolved: finding purpose, solving problems, building resilience, creating ideal conditions to thrive, and leaving a lasting legacy.
Walks in the Wild offers a guide through the forest, with Peter Wohlleben, a forester from Germany who has written several books on what we can learn from nature and wildlife. In this charming book, he takes you on a journey of discovery. You’ll learn how to find your way in a forest without a compass, know which trees to shelter in a storm, how to tell apart a deciduous and coniferous tree, how to read animal tracks and learn what it’s like to spend a night in a forest. Peter is also author of The Hidden Life of Trees (learn how tree parents live together with children, communicate with other, support each other as they grow, share nutrients with those who are sick and warn each other of impending dangers).
A Tree a Day immerses you in tree facts, and phhotograph and art by nature writer Amy-Jane Beer, a tour of the world’s woodlands from mysterious ginkos to historical oaks. Anyone who has sat in the dappled shade of a mighty oak or wandered in the blaze of a deciduous woodland in autumn cannot fail and each of the 366 entries reveal the science, natural history or folklore of our great and gracious green neighbours, the history made beneath the branches or the creativity they inspire. From the awesome Californian redwoods, titans of the tree world to tiny but exquisite bonsai the japanese springtime tradition of hanami (blossom viewing. And learn how trees support life on earth as wekno it. Forest bathing in book form.
The Oak Papers is a stunning meditation by James Canton, who spent 2 years sitting with and studying the Honywood Oak, which would have been a sapling, when the Magna Carta was signed. Initially visiting the tree for escape and solitude, in time he learns to study it more closely, and how our long-standing dependency on oak trees has morphed into myth and legend. A book on the lessons we can learn from the natural world, if only we slow down enough to listen.
Tree: A Life Story (recycled paper) is a beautiful collaboration between a writer and an environmentalist, detailing the story of a tree’s lifetime over several hundred years. The story begins the moment the seed is released from the cone to 500 years later, as it lies on the forest floor, giving life to ferns, mosses and hemlocks – even as its own life is ending.