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December 2013 - Gifts from Trees
Not to be a Grinch, but when it comes to gifts, trees have it all over Old Saint Nick.
Unlike the right jolly old elf who visits our stockings once a year, trees bear gifts in every season. Wood products shelters us, give our homes and furnishings character, and employ us. Trees’ gifts are too subtle for wrapping paper (note another gift of trees): they give us shade on a blazing hot day and brilliant color on a grey November afternoon, they sequester carbon and clean the air and water of pollution, improving our health and literally saving lives.
The gifts of trees go deeper: they root us in place, growing bigger and older but remaining dependably familiar landmarks in changing personal and geographic landscapes. Even trees lost to storms become much-needed symbols of resilience.
This month, we celebrate the gifts of trees by featuring a scientist, a research project, a publication, and a partnership that highlight the multitude of gifts we receive from trees. A chorus of “O Tannenbaum,” anyone?