TG Escapes Blog
National Tree Week 29th November to 7th December 2014
First launched in 1975, National Tree Week is the UK’s largest annual tree celebration, always timed to coincide with the beginning of the winter tree planting season. It represents a great opportunity for communities to do something positive for their local tree population…so why not make a decision to plant a tree this year?
Or you could get involved in one of the activities being coordinated by the Tree Council, the UK’s leading charity for trees, dedicated to promoting their importance in our everyday lives in a changing environment.
So why do trees matter? For starters, they are beautiful. Whether it be a mighty oak standing proud in an open area of grassland or a park; an ancient woodland with sunlight dancing through the canopy lighting up the myriad flora below; or a gnarled old apple tree in your back garden shading you from the hot midday sun, trees provide beauty and serenity in our lives. But leaving aesthetics aside for the moment, trees matter because of the vital role they play in maintaining the health of our planet, in these turbulent times of climate change and prolific population growth.
Trees are the lungs of the Earth, filtering pollutants from the air and releasing oxygen back into the atmosphere. Courtesy of the dense community of microbes living in their root systems, trees naturally filter much of the toxic waste we humans dump into the ground, purifying our underground water reservoirs. Furthermore, the root systems themselves literally keep the earth together. They serve to maintain carbon stores; prevent soil erosion and regulate water flow, thus limiting both flood damage and drought.
Woodlands, forests and jungles provide a safe, natural environment for a breath-taking array of plants and wildlife, preserving the eco-systems and bio diversity upon which our planet relies. Trees play an essential role in our food chain on many levels. Through the natural and perfect alchemy of photosynthesis, they turn sunlight into food for creatures, big and small, including us. Decomposing leaves leach acid into the water basin, and ultimately the oceans, that help fertilize the plankton upon which all marine life ultimately depends.
From a purely human perspective, since the dawn of mankind, trees have provided us with wood for shelter, fuel, tools and furniture. As we know at The Garden Escape, timber framed buildings have been around since buildings have been around. Woodlands provide us with a fabulous natural playground in which to enjoy a vast array of recreational pursuits and outdoor exercise, boosting our well-being physically, mentally and spiritually. Which leads us nicely back to the beauty and majesty of trees and the simple pleasures provided by their presence in our lives.
“To such an extent does nature delight and abound I variety that among her trees there is not one plant to be found which is exactly like another. And not only among the plants, but among the boughs, the leaves and the fruits, you will not find one which is exactly similar to another.”
Leonardo da Vinci
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