Happy National Love a Tree Day! Who knew? I love trees every day, and even more so since I read The Wisdom of Trees: How Trees Work Together to Form a Natural Kingdom written and illustrated by Lita Judge.
Each beautiful spread, with carefully detailed illustrations, contains a poem about trees on the left side, and information about tree communities' ability to communicate, warn, and protect each other on the right. An author's note tells how this fascination for trees took root, and back matter fills in more details about tree communities.
Scientists have learned a lot about tree behavior recently, and it is amazing! For example, in "Neighbor, Can You Hear Me?" the poem is a tree calling out to its neighbors. The factual information tells us that when insects attack a tree, the tree sends electrical signals through the fungi living among the tree's roots. When other trees receive the warning, they "pump a bitter-tasting chemical called tannin into their leaves to ward off the insects" (p. 11).
Enjoy this short video about how the book was made and see its beauty for yourself.
Through the seasons and around the world, Judge shows and tells us how trees take care of each other. We could learn a lot from trees!
See more about Lita Judge's award-winning books here.