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The Benefits of Trees
Perhaps because of their constant presence, most of us rarely lend much thought to the importance of trees in our lives, communities, and histories. We may take them for granted, or see them as mere decorations. Trees, however, are a vital and nurturing force. They benefit our environment, provide us medicines, and inspire myths and stories. One of the best ways to realize the importance of trees is to imagine our world without them.

Why Do Leaves Change Color?
After every season of green and shade and the delicious sound of leaves rustling in the evening breeze, deciduous trees have one final gift to offer - an explosion of brilliant color.  For an all too brief period each autumn, every country road becomes a painting and every leafy sidewalk or forest path a gallery.

Dr. Alex Shigo "Tree Autopsy"
A tree stores its life story within its wooden form.  Each year, from the time it was a seedling to the final moments before it met its demise, is meticulously recorded for the knowledgeable observer to interpret.  Successfully deciphering the lines, shapes and colors that make up a dendrochronological record helps us not only to understand the past, but also to guide tree care in the future.  Dr. Alex Shigo, former head of the US Forest Service, takes us on a journey through the lives of 4 trees.

Dr. Alex Shigo "Troubles in the Rhizosphere"
A lot more goes on underneath the surface than most of us realize.  Even after a tree loses its leaves, activity continues in the root system.  Dr. Alex Shigo describes some of the "behind-the-scenes" action.