Trees Are The Lungs Of The Earth

Japanese Maple Oct 2020 scaled

National Tree Day was September 21st, and it seems fitting to acknowledge this by paying tribute to the elders of our plant world, the lofty and noble tree.  We as a species simply could not exist on Earth without trees.

Most people know that trees absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen. But it’s way more interesting than that!


*One acre of trees consumes annually the amount of carbon dioxide produced bv driving an average car 26,000 miles, approximately the circumference of the earth. The carbon is stored bv the trees as wood fibre.

*This same acre of trees also produces enough oxygen for 18 people to breathe, every day.

*Trees actually improve air quality by capturing airborne pollutants, filtering them through their leaves, stems and twigs.  When trees are present, there is up to 60% less particulate matter in the air. Gaseous pollutants are absorbed by the stomata on the leaves’ surface. Ever notice how good the air feels in a forest?

*Trees cool the air and ground by their gift of shade, and recycle the water they take in through their roots. Evaporation of the water held in leaves causes humidity to rise, eventually to fall again as rain.

*Trees provide shelter and food to all manner of wildlife, from birds and insects to giant carnivores such as bears.

*Tree roots stabilize soil, preventing erosion. Their falling leaves renew the soil every year.

Now it gets even more interesting….

*Research has shown that people in hospitals and sickrooms who can see trees from their windows rather than blank walls actually heal faster! They have fewer complications, and require less pain medication.

*The Japanese practice of ‘forest bathing’, or Shinrinyoku, is claimed to reduce stress and boost the immune response to cancer and other illness. Breathing in the essential oils emitted by the trees has been given scientific scrutiny, but it doesn’t take a scientist to see how good we feel after spending time with trees. For more info on Shinrinyoku, see

It is said “the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, but the next best time is today”. When you sit under a tree today it’s because someone planted a tree a long time ago. Habitat for wildlife, air and water for humans, and care for the Earth; trees are pretty wonderful, don’t you think?