Look around, and you can see endless amounts of trees in nature, but do you really connect with them? Do you understand their importance? Maybe not. Every tree you see was planted at some point for a reason with a purpose. Let’s take a look at why those trees exist and how they got there, so the next time you’re among the forest, you have a deeper appreciation.
Understanding the Life and Importance of Trees
What is the importance of trees? For starters, they’re master multitaskers, providing oxygen, improving air quality, conserving water, preserving soil and supporting wildlife. We depend on the forests for our survival—from the air we breathe to the wood we use. Protecting and restoring forests has never been more urgent
So, how is a forest restored or created ? In barren lands across the country, tree professionals are often called in to create natural, wild, maintenance-free, native forests. To inspire you to reconnect with nature, we’re taking a closer look at the process.
It all starts with soil.
Tree experts start by touching, feeling, and even tasting the soil to identify what properties it lacks. If the soil is made up of small particles, it becomes compact—so compact, that water cannot seep in. So, they mix some local biomass (organic matter) around, to help it become more porous. If the soil doesn’t have the capacity to hold water, they’ll mix in some more water-absorbent material like peat or bagasse.
As you probably know, plants need water, sunlight and nutrition to grow. So, what if the soil doesn’t have any nutrition in it? Rather than just adding it in directly (the industrial way), these experts add microorganisms to produce the nutrients naturally. They feed on the biomass, multiply, and the soil starts breathing again. It becomes alive! Fascinating, isn’t it?
What are the Uses of Trees in the Forest?
When tree professionals create a new forest, it’s important that they choose native tree species of the area. Whatever trees existed before human intervention is considered native, and they do their research to figure that out. They survey national parks and sacred groves around old temples. And if nothing is found, they go to museums, research old paintings, and even read poems and literature from the area, to identify the tree species belonging there.
This is where the uses of trees come into play. If they’re creating a fruit forest, the percentage of fruit-bearing trees is increased. It could also be a flowering forest, one that attracts a lot of birds or bees, or it could simply be a native, wild evergreen forest. Next, they:
● Collect the seeds and germinate saplings out of them
● Make sure that trees belonging to the same layer aren’t planted next to each other, so they don’t fight for the same vertical space when they grow tall
● Plant the saplings close to each other, spreading a thick layer of mulch on the surface, so the soil stays moist when it’s hot outside
The soil is kept very soft so that the roots can penetrate into it easily, rapidly. Once these roots are established, the forest starts growing on the surface. As it grows, it’s watered for two to three ,and eventually not at all. By then, when a single leaf falls on this forest floor, it immediately starts decaying and forms humus, a much-needed source of food and nutrition. Once established, these forests regenerate themselves again and again.
See the Forest Through the Trees
Knowing the importance of trees—not just the wood they supply, but the many other benefits they provide for people and nature, taking a walk among them can be a transformative experience. Isn’t it time you reconnected with trees in nature?