Creating Wealth in a Woman’s Way – Are Trees the Key? – Post #8
In yesterday’s book post, I alluded that trees can be a powerful key for women in creating wealth.
When you think about a tree, you likely have various thoughts and sensations about it such as: big and strong, deep root system, peaceful, rustling leaves, a home for living creatures, shade and protection, fun to climb, beautiful, grounded, intentional (think little acorns which turn into mighty oaks), resilient, long-lasting, reliable.
ACTION: In your Money Journal, write out your own views of a Tree. Take your time with this as you will return to this list later in this book.
A Basic Primer on Trees
In the next couple of days, I’ll make the connection on how trees and wealth-building are interconnected. But, for today, I’m purely talking about trees and the amazing structure and functions they possess.
ROOT SYSTEM & SOIL
When you think of trees, most of your thoughts will likely center around what is above the ground. However, some of the most astounding aspects of trees is what exists below the ground.
The Root system of a tree not only stabilizes the tree and helps it to take up water, but it also serves as the means for the tree to find and feed itself the necessary nutrients and sugars to grow and thrive.
But there’s more…and this is where things get really cool. Down in the soil surrounding the tree is a vast forest network – connected by threads of fungi – a hidden neighborhood, if you will.
We tend to just view trees as individual organisms doing their own thing – which they are to some degree. However, there is growing evidence to suggest that a forest may very well be a single, sprawling organism (vs. a collection of individual organisms).
When trees live in a forest network, there is an amazing support system going on underneath the surface.
Via the hidden network of fungi threads (located just beneath the forest floor), the trees are not only uploading and downloading the nutrients (from the mineral layers underneath the network) needed for themselves, but also sharing and transferring the retrieved sugars and nutrients needed by neighboring trees.
Researchers have documented trees sending out communication signals, hormones and nutrients to nearby trees in distress –resulting from damage, pests, or disease.
They have even documented the presence of “mother trees” in the forest – trees which have the ability to recognize their own kin (their “tree family”) and nurture them through more substantial underground networks of communications and nutrient-sharing.
There is also a downside to what is, otherwise, a beautiful and amazing support network. Trees are also capable of transferring disease to neighboring trees – with damaging, sometimes, fatal results. Whole neighborhoods of trees can be harmed or wiped out as a result.
Whether this is intentional, or not, is not clear.
Given all the above, it’s not surprising to learn is that a tree’s (in)ability to thrive can be affected by the neighbors with whom it shares the soil.
There is a fascinating Ted Talk on trees and their underground network HERE.
The trunk of the tree has multiple functions that work to ensure the tree’s health and long-term survival.
Heartwood: In the center of the trunk is the “heartwood”. This is a very strong part of the tree that enables it to grow tall, while also supporting the weight and breadth of it’s branches. Trees can be competitive and being taller ensures more sunlight (and, hence, more food).
Rings: Over time, most trees will increase their girth by adding a new ring beneath the outer layer of bark. Each new ring strengthens the tree as it grows taller and wider.
Bark: The bark on the trunk serves as protection from pests, fungi, and disease. Significant damage to the bark can result in death for the tree.
Xylem & Phloem: One of the more interesting parts of the trunk is the transport system inside of it. This transport system consists of tiny tubes – called xylem and phloem – that run the entire length of the trunk.
- Xylem is responsible to gathering the nutrients and water from the root system and delivering it to the leaves at the top of the tree.
- Phloem has a similar function as it carries sugars and nutrients to other parts of the tree.
Through this internal transport system (much like our own human circulatory system), all the trees parts become interconnected and HIGHLY interdependent.
Join me, again, tomorrow as there are a few more things to learn about trees before we move forward!