The Family Life of Trees


Have you ever seen a family of trees? The Secret Wisdom of Nature author Peter Wohlleben brought to my attention the surprising connection between many forest things, most surprisingly that trees appear to have 'families'. 

Here are some examples;

When a beech tree drops its seed on the forest floor the sapling doesn't have access to light since 97% of it is blocked by the parent beech, however through the roots the parent tree gives nutrients to its baby so it can go grow without photosynthesis for a few years. 

Acacia trees send messages through tannins. Giraffe's like to eat acacia's, but when injured (read: eaten) the tree develops unsavoury tannins which neighbouring acacias pick up on through the wind and then also produce tannins.

Other trees seem to be able to plan hundreds of kilometres apart when to shed seeds so predators cannot count on the alimentation and the trees increase their probability of survival. 

Read the book or listen to this interview with Peter Wohlleben to learn more about trees and the connections within forests