The Earth has no more impressive plants – no plants of greater importance to both nature and human beings – than trees. But like shrubs and herbs, even the largest tree starts out in life as a small seedling – indeed as one of many, among which only a tiny fraction have any chance of surviving. However, as trees grow, they do gain certain advantages over other kinds of plant.
They owe their success to the size they are able to reach, and the resistance to outside factors and length of life that size guarantees. This leaves trees as dominant, ”permanent” elements in the landscape, and ones that serve a host of different functions. Likewise, in the areas transformed and dominated by human beings, green space can also play a key (underappreciated) role, if only given the chance to do so.
To better know and understand these exceptional organisms and their functions is to love them more, and to develop a huge desire to protect and care for them, in all their helpfulness and ”generosity”. This is in turn the first step to the building of some kind of community-level commitment to a management of our surroundings that is better and more fully thought-out, with a suitably important role assigned to trees.
In today’s Poland, it is possible to observe a disturbing trend for more and more trees to disappear from – and thus impoverish – our landscapes. Happily, the need for that situation to change is coming to be appreciated by more and more people. This is manifested in support for movements in our communities that strive to protect the remaining old trees, but also to plant new ones to take their place. In our case, a further key aim is to encourage local authorities into similar actions.
It is important to us that those wanting to protect trees should also have basic legal knowledge of relevance to the situation, as well as a good understanding of nature and natural processes. At the same time, we extend support to administrative officials, where they take correct decisions in regard to trees. This kind of community system by which to care for trees has been operating very successfully for many years now in countries like the United Kingdom.
So spring into action this very day!