Saturday, January 22, 2011

Why Trees Matter

Is there anything in nature that is more taken for granted, than the tree?
People forget to enjoy them for their beauty, the shade they create, increased property values... and of course lumber. But a fascinating program produced by the OSU Extension has discovered tree lined streets are safer, because more people gather in these neighborhoods.

Yes, the beauty of a Tulip Tree, Liriodendren tulipifera in bloom is undeniable.

And consider this Hickory with deep crevasses of bark to hold wintering butterflies and beetles in all forms.

Or the chestnut. A keystone species in America, once the predominate tree of our Ohio forest, wiped out in our parent's generation. Our American variety is all but gone, now only this poor imitation and disease carrying Chinese Chestnut species survives.

Or the mighty Bur Oaks, Quercus macrocarpa growing on a prairie landscape, providing nuts for wildlife and leaves for a host of those butterfly-want-to-be: caterpillars!

.................ReMoRegal Moth larva photo by John Howard
Awesome creations of every imaginable form, some with prickly sticky-out parts, and others with the soft down of a Woolly Bear. by Dane Adams

Native woodpeckers, searching for grubs and signing possession of their trees with signature hole. These Red-headed Woodpeckers - now rare enough to be cherished by any bird enthusiast- what would we do without them?

....... .....Flying squirrel photo Warren Uxley
And what of the creatures of the night? The Flying Squirrel, winter serenading woodland owls, and the nearly luminescent Luna moths plying their trade- unseen in the night air.
These are a few of the reasons why trees matter to me. If you would like to learn more about trees, I encourage you to learn more by joining our local Master Gardeners. There is a tab a the top of this web-site to click on for more details.
Or, sign up for Flora-Quest to hear about the amazing trees of Shawnee Forest, from none other than Jim McCormac- one of Ohio's best botanists. He will be the kick-off speaker for the botanical/ birding adventure you'll never forget.


  1. great series of tree biodiversity Cheryl

  2. Love the trees. I always scope out the lone, stately oak trees left behind to guard the farmers' fields. I call them 'Sentinels'. Sadly, over the years many have met their demise and the only thing I have left is a photo and my memory. Winter is the best time to see their structural beauty.

  3. I agree Vickster!

    This world will be sadly depleted when the last of them (and the traditional wooden barns) disappear from our country's landscape.