"And what if you cut a tree down? Is it then dead? What about the centuries-old stump I introduced you to at the beginning of this book that is still alive today, thanks to its comrades? Is that a tree? And, if it isn't, then what is it? It gets even more complicated when a new trunk grows out of an old stump. In many woods, this happens all the time" (p. 80).What a fascinating book! I could imagine a forest of trees "leaning" on one another, "talking" to each other via their roots, and sending out "scent" signals to warn other trees of dangers such as insects nibbling on leaves or beetles boring into their trunks.
article in the New York Times about this book and the social network of trees.
article about fungal networks, if you're curious.
Can you tell I love trees? Here are a few posts I've written about trees on my various blogs over the years:
I thought it would be an antique, rare, hard to find. Nope, I found all sorts of links to information about this book. You can even look inside it here, and read it online for free.I also post poetry about trees. This e. e. cummings poem is an out-pouring of gratitude, which praises "the leaping greenly spirits of trees."
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes
(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)
how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any—lifted from the no
of all nothing—human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?
(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)
Hear e. e. cummings (1894-1962) read this poem himself, thanks to YouTube.