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Tree guardianship: a radical New Year’s resolution

All Areas > Environment > Save the Planet

Author: Hannah Basnett, Posted: Monday, 18th December 2023, 09:00

I recently journeyed through the picturesque landscapes of Wales; a radiant sunset painted the sky, casting a golden glow on the myriad of trees. Intrigued yet ignorant of their names and stories, I found myself captivated by the gentle whispers of branches swaying in the breeze.

It was in that fleeting moment that I made a silent promise to embark on a journey of discovery – a commitment to understanding and appreciating the intricate world of trees.

Talks and exhibitions fueled my curiosity

In pursuit of this newfound passion, I attended tree talks and art exhibitions, where my fascination deepened, particularly for apple trees that once adorned the orchards of Gloucestershire. The revelation that a tree could bear sweet, edible treasures only fueled my curiosity. Each nugget of knowledge about these oxygen-producing guardians of the Earth intensified my appreciation for their seasonal journey.

Engaging in conversations with a dedicated tree warden, I faced a question that left me pondering: what was my favourite tree? The answer eluded me, prompting a realisation that I had yet to form a personal connection with a single tree. This was the catalyst for my New Year’s resolution: tree guardianship.

In the spirit of reciprocity between humanity and nature, I’ve chosen to form a connection with a tree I regularly encounter. This involves establishing a meaningful bond by keenly observing its distinctive characteristics, noting the subtle shifts in its seasonal changes, and reflecting on the impact it has on me. Taking an active role in its care, whether through watering in the height of summer, weeding, or adorning it with ribbons, becomes a personal commitment.

Creating a sustainable partnership with the natural world

You could take this further with the local county council scheme – a part of the ‘Greener Gloucestershire’ campaign, which encourages individuals to select a tree, sponsor its maintenance, and establish a meaningful bond with a living being. It’s a commitment to contribute to the wellbeing of our environment and create a sustainable partnership with the natural world.

Learn about tree care

For those seeking a communal approach, there are quite a few community orchards across the county that offer a wonderful opportunity to learn about tree care and cultivation. By becoming involved in such projects, you can not only expand your knowledge but also actively contribute to the preservation and prosperity of orchards within their communities.

In embracing tree guardianship, we not only enhance our understanding of the natural world but also actively contribute to the well-being of our environment. I hope we can embark on this journey together, celebrating a new year, a new version of ourselves, and a new tree, fostering a caring, harmonious coexistence with the magnificent beings that share our planet.

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