Protecting nature is a communal activity that all people play a role in, but knowing why is an important motivating factor. One of our best allies in the continued survival of humanity, be it from global warming or just nature itself, are trees. Trees come in all shapes, sizes, and uses.
Some trees are evergreen, meaning they never lose their leaves, and produce incredibly useful sap and syrup. Other trees produce fruit, like apples or peaches. Other trees just simply provide us shade and help hold land together. No matter the type of tree, they serve a purpose, but why are trees important? Some of the reasons may surprise you.
Celebrating trees might be often embarrassing, bestowing upon you the name tree hugger or hippie-dippie, but we find it important to celebrate the arboreal as much as we celebrate any other aspect of our life that gives us joy. The celebration isn’t just for trees, but all the ways we use trees every day of our lives. Here are thirty benefits of trees, which are the reasons why we love them and why you should, too.
30 Benefits of Trees
1. Trees nature incarnate
By being kind to trees and also planting them, you’re helping nature come back into our everyday lives and bringing more beauty into the world. They’re so grand because they’re a simple way for you to connect to the natural, unplugged world.
2. Trees create economic benefits
Fruits, nuts, lumber, decoration, and even driving foot traffic to local businesses, trees hold many economic benefits!
3. Trees provide sustenance for animals
Those fruits and nuts you enjoy? Also enjoyed by animals both wild and tamed.
4. Trees help with pollution
By absorbing CO2 and other toxins that are released into our atmosphere, trees help clean the air wherever they’re planted, along with the soil and water supply they’re also linked too.
5. Trees help with allergens
Apart from absorbing pollutants, they also absorb allergens that cause distress in the spring months.
6. Trees prevent water pollution
By filtering toxins from rainwater with their root system, trees help prevent water from being tainted by toxic rain.
7. Trees help with air pollution
Because they’re absorbing allergens, CO2, and other pollutants, trees make for a great way to spare the air.
8. Trees save water
Trees create atmospheric moisture, helping nearby plants retain moisture more than before.
9. Trees beautify the area
Bringing in trees helps makes any environment, from a busy street corner to a community park to an office parking lot, feel more natural and beautiful.
10. Trees protect wildlife
From insects living in the roots to rodents living in the stumps to birds living happily in the branches – Trees help fauna of all kinds by providing home and protection from man-made dangers.
11. Trees provide clean air
Providing relief from ammonia, sulfur dioxide, and even ozone, trees absorb toxins from the air and release fresh, clean air.
12. Trees help climate change
Trees needs CO2 in order to power themselves, and in turn produce life-giving oxygen. This means that trees help lower carbon footprints and helps make the world a better place.
13. Tress improve mental health
Studies have shown that living with trees helps lower cortisol levels, the stress chemical that causes foggy headedness and exhaustion.
14. Trees improve spiritual health
From the Nordic Yggdrasil to the Garden of Gethsemane in Israel, trees are known to have importance to our spirituality and reminding us that we’re part of something bigger.
15. Trees improve physical health
Being among nature lowers stress and encourages a more active lifestyle, both things people need to live a healthier lifestyle.
16. Trees lower soil erosion
By making a canopy for the earth and rooting themselves to the earth, trees of all sorts help lower and slow soil erosion.
17. Trees create identity
Southern Gothic wouldn’t be as powerful without moss covered oaks, and Los Angeles wouldn’t be as fun and fancy-free without palm trees lining Rodeo Drive. Trees help communities create identity for themselves and also establish aesthetics.
18. Trees lower crime
In something that sounds unbelievable, there has been a direct tie between trees and lower crime rates in urban environments!
19. Trees create housing
Lumber and other tree elements help people build and decorate their homes. That’s not mentioning the housing for animals the trees provide, along with the ever-beloved tree house.
2o. Trees provide sustenance for you
Fruits? Nuts? All come from trees, making them beautiful and necessary.
21. Trees contain history
Trees remind people that there are things that last long after we’re gone, and are there long before we come along. Some trees are upwards of 4000 years old – Older than most world religions!
22. Trees cool down cities
Trees provide some serious cooling power. One fully grown tree supplies the cooling power of ten air conditioning units! Several trees can make even the warmest days of summer bearable.
23. Trees keep you warm
Properly planted, fully grown trees can cut down on wind-chill, saving 20-50% on energy used for heating your home.
24. Trees help local fauna
From raccoons to local fowl, trees can help protect and even boost the population of woodland creatures that are native to your city or neighborhood.
25. Trees provide wood
What seems obvious is actually quite relevant. Lumber from trees creates furniture, houses, packaging, and other items we use all the time.
26. Trees can create personal value
The connection people feel between themselves and trees is an incredibly personal experience, and one that’s different from person to person. Anything that creates a sense of awe like that deserves recognition.
27. Trees provide many necessary materials
From the pulp we use to make books and paper and cardboard boxes, along with packaging from wooden crates to all sorts of furniture. We use wood and wood products almost every day!
28. Trees de-ugly environments
Ugly parking lots, large swaths of unpainted concrete, or just less-than-pretty houses? They can all be corrected with trees!
29. Trees raise property values
While remodeling your kitchen and bathroom can raise property values, there’s a chance of 100%-200% recovery rate for home investments when they are landscaped.
30. Trees are beautiful
This is a simple point, but undeniably important! The appreciation of aesthetics and natural beauty have so many physical and mental benefits that it’s hard not to simply celebrate trees for being natural wonders.
Pair the 30 Tree Benefits printable below with Our Tree Observation lesson plan, that offers kids a week loaded with activities that promote movement and song, reading, and critical thinking, including a week-long Tree Observation lesson plan, field notes worksheet, and tree anatomy dissection worksheet.
It might be a simple note to end on, but just appreciating the beauty of something is a note we can all take for our everyday lives. Just taking the moment to stop and appreciate what you have, what you’re provided, can really bring you a sense of peace and comfort. We hope that this simple list of 15 things that we love about trees will bring you to think about what you love about the simple things in life!
Want to take action right now? Give the gift of a tree dedication from our friends at TreePeople, an organization born from the efforts of a teenager over 40 years ago, that works tirelessly to unite communities to grow a greener, shadier and more water-secure city at homes, neighborhoods, schools and in the local mountains.