Book Extensions, book review, Something To Do

Celebrating Earth Day: What is Treecology?

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Happy Earth Day Everyone! I think for me every day is Earth Day. We are great lovers of nature in this house and we try really really hard to walk gently on the earth.

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else.”  John Muir

Nothing could be farther from the truth than when we talk about trees.

Treecology: 30 Activities and Observations for Exploring the World of Trees and Forests by Monica Russo is a young naturalist guide into the world of trees.



What is Treecology

Though we often think of trees living in a forest, trees are actually found everywhere. Wherever you find a tree you will find an entire world within and around it.

Treecology uses the perfect blend of scientific fact and activity based explorations for ages 7 and up.

The insights and information is an invitation to look deeper, and experience nature first hand through its “Look for” and Listen for” activities.


Children observer the diversity of trees by looking for a variety of shapes, colors, and patterns found on and around trees.


Treecology also brings home the message that not only are we to be observers and naturalists but we are to be Tree Keepers as well.

We are a family of tree lovers and at times even tree huggers. Treecology reminded me of some fun activities I had forgotten about such s crayon rubbings of leaves. on ago we use to gather leaves and press them, then iron them between wax paper and make pretty pictures to hang on the wall. We would also use the pressed leaves to decorate other objects as well.

Along with all of the incredible crafts in Treecology, there are also the amazing discoveries. Such as, do you know how many leaves there are on a tree? Can you identify a pine tree by its pine needle clusters? Do you know which trees make noise or that there is an entire world living on, in and around a tree?

I greatly enjoyed the wildlife chapter and discovering grouses. One activity that brought more joy and excitement in this family was becoming a “moth whisperer” and attracting beautiful tree moths to the trees in our yard.

It’s not enough just to explore, discover, and take care of trees, we have to embrace the future as well by learning about the way trees reproduce via their seeds, cones, and pods.

Just think, an entire tree lives inside a tiny acorn. This time of year the maple trees are seeding with their fruit called Samaras. We called them helicopters and loved to collect them and toss them in the air. It’s so much fun to watch them spin down.


Treecology also boasts a wonderful resource section which includes tree terms, Interactive Common and Scientific Names, resources of organizations and the most incredible teachers guide which helps deepen Treecology and the experiences holds even further.

Seeds and their tree seedlings are the forest of the future. A recent study showed that the #1 thing we can do to reverse climate change is to plant trees.

On this Earth Day please take action and see what you can do to walk more gently on the earth, to invest in the future by taking care of our planet. A great first step would be plant trees in your yard or neighborhood. Then go exploring inside this new world you’ve planted. Treecology is an incredible guide for children that will have them awe and wonderstruck about the world around them and parents can grab their copy HERE.

Happy Earth Day Everybody!


Something To Do

Learn about Tree Rings

As a tree grows, it produces new layers of wood around the trunk, just under the bark. If a tree is cut down, the layers are visible in a cross-section. The layers appear as a set of concentric circles known as tree rings.

In general, one layer of wood grows each year. Each layer consists of two colors of wood: light-colored “earlywood” that grows in the spring and summer plus darker, denser “latewood” from the fall and winter.


Tree rings—also known as annual growth rings—vary in size each year depending upon the environmental conditions that the tree experiences. For most locations, tree rings will be wider during years of abundant rainfall and narrower during times of drought.

By counting back from the year a living tree was cut, it is possible to determine how old the tree is. Find a tree stump and start counting the tree rings from the outside and move to the center of the tree trunk.

Why Trees Matter-Fun Facts About Trees

Amazing Facts and Figures About Trees #Infographic

You can also find more infographics at Visualistan

I’m now asking you. Am I asking, “What will you do to make the world a more beautiful place ? “ It’s completely alright if you don’t know what that is yet. The joy is in the discovery. Here’s a few ideas to get you started:

10 ways to make the world more beautiful

10 Ways to Make the World More Beautiful

1. Smile

2. Eat and Buy Locally

3. Start a garden – Plant a Tree

4. Be Kind

5. Recycle – Repurpose – Reuse

6. Be a Good Neighbor

7. Ride Your Bike – Walk

8. Participate in a Community Clean-up

9. Give a Compliment

10. Conserve Water and Electricity

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