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The forest AND the trees

By SANDY LONG
Posted 10/2/19

Following my last column about fall webworms and eastern tent caterpillars, I decided to share something more pleasing to the eye, and to the spirit, therefore this paean to the restorative nature of …

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The forest AND the trees

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Following my last column about fall webworms and eastern tent caterpillars, I decided to share something more pleasing to the eye, and to the spirit, therefore this paean to the restorative nature of fall foliage forays in the Upper Delaware River region. But beyond the wild beauty of our forests and the gift of their fantastical foliage is the importance of their impact on the health and well-being of our planet and ourselves.

A new documentary featuring scientist and acclaimed author Diana Beresford-Kroeger has just been released. The film, “Call of the Forest: The Forgotten Wisdom of Trees,” explores the most beautiful forests in the Northern Hemisphere as well as our biological and spiritual connections to them.

“Trees provide food, create medicine and, most importantly, provide life-giving oxygen,” note the editors of the www.dailygood.org blog, which highlighted the film’s release. “Without trees and their ability to capture carbon dioxide, our living breathable atmosphere would cease to exist on our planet. Trees are the most important living organisms on earth: chemically affecting our environment more than anything else and playing a vital role that sustains all life. Trees are literally the lifeline of the planet and the key to reversing climate change.”

If you’re up for a challenge, DCNR is collaborating with the Keystone Trails Association (KTA) to recognize any hiker completing the nearly 800 miles of state forest hiking trails open to the public. Visit www.bit.ly/environmentdigest to learn more. The KTA offers seven additional awards for hiking the state’s terrific trails, with details available at www.kta-hike.org/hiking-awards. If you achieve any of the awards, please let us know by emailing copyeditor@riverreporter.com so that we can share your success story with our readers.| Sandy Long

The film calls for global reforestation to offset the ongoing loss of the world’s forests. But it empowers individuals by proposing that we each can combat climate change by simply planting trees where we live.

“Climate change is happening,” says Beresford-Kroeger. “What can we do about it? It will start with a shovel and an acorn, but we might just change the world.”

It will start, also, with awakening our awareness of and appreciation for our forests. Right now, they are offering up one of their finest gifts with the arrival of the fall foliage season. Plan your forays by following the PA and NY weekly fall foliage reports provided at www.bit.ly/fallreports and at www.bit.ly/fallreports2.

While out and about, take time to enjoy the many fall festivals, seasonal foods and beverages, haunted attractions and outdoor recreational opportunities that abound. Visit www.visitpa.com/season/fall and www.bit.ly/fallthingstodo for details on what’s happening when and where.

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