Grow! Don’t “Mow”! New Green Industry = Grow Forests

Seriously–forget cap-and-trade. Forget all the nonsense about expanding until all the Earth is covered in concrete. We all know concrete cracks. Nor does concrete produce Oxygen. Consider the increasing need for clean air. Think about the recent Urban Air Bamboo Billboards project. Now–imagine trees everywhere. Not just any trees planted helter skelter, but trees native to each landscape flourishing, thriving, expanding so that they produce oxygen–which ALL Homo sapiens require for life 24/7 year round–yep, even corporate oil executives need oxygen no matter how much they may deny it.  Hmm, with those trees will come other plants –and animals, insects, birds–all sorts of wonderful living things! Of course humans will have to learn a great deal about all their non-human living relations in order to adjust to sharing the Earth’s space in a positive non-destructive manner. There’s really no reason to fear those curious little skinks exploring the undergrowth.  We’re all much larger than any of them.  What is keeping us from growing more trees? Why don’t we pay the countries with rainforests to keep their forests intact and expanding? Let’s not just maintain the rainforests, let’s encourage their expansion. More Redwoods anyone? Hmm? Why not? How about oaks, cottonwoods, birch, aspen, pines? Think of all the jobs that would be created in order to educate humans about how the return of forests would benefit them –and owls, beavers, fish, elk, wolves. What new things could be learned and discovered about the medicinal properties of wildflowers, grasses, trees? Many biologists, chemists, surveyors, teachers would be required to deal with all the information starting with collection to distribution.  Imagine a world in which humans live amidst nature instead of outside, disconnected, and alienated from the web of life.  New urban designs for cities with more than city parks–but cities as “parks’–as greenways. How about some consideration for animals that need to migrate? Hmm? I’m sure some clever imaginative folks can devise all sorts of tunnels and bridges and other pathways for our animal relations to travel safely.

Imagine Earth alive and thriving with forests, prairies, cacti galore.  Imagine thousands of people planting trees, repairing removed mountaintops, clearing out the plastic in the oceans. Cleaning crews could be busy for decades.  Imagine a healthy planet.

The map posted at Greenpeace International is from 2006 so I suspect there is much LESS forest today than it depicts. But this offers a starting point.

Isn’t it time to put an end to this:

And get some traction going perhaps this way:

Btw, goats will eat any plant that is not toxic to them.

I’m not entirely “pleased” with this post. Please share your suggestions, input, ideas, questions, brainstorms for improving it.



  1. Meg said,

    January 21, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    We also need to think about climage change as we plant trees. Many of our evergreen species are looking decidedly reddish brown, particularly along the road ways. Also many of the species that normally don’t do well in colder climes are doing better than expected. I have thought for a long time that we should be planting nuts, oaks, maples, and fruit trees even red and white pine because they provide food. Foolish notion, Someone has to clean up the “fruits” and leaves off the parking lot(?) while people come out of the store with their plastic wrapped packages of nuts shipped from a place 1000 miles away. (btw nuts over cars not a great plan! experience!)

  2. January 12, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    Planting trees is intellectually simple and surely one of the best things we can do to mitigate climate change. It does, however, make a difference what tree species you plant. In my city which is experiencing a die off of older, larger trees…when they go they are too often being replaced with trees that are convenient for human activity. We have seen tree species, particularly pear species that flower nicely, don’t grow too large to interfere with power lines, but have such brittle wood that a good wind storm just tears them up. In the end, they just cost more money to replace. I know this will sound unrealistic, but we should adjust “our” lives to nature and not the other way around.

    • January 15, 2013 at 4:13 pm

      Al, I think it makes perfect sense. Plant native species which usually thrive in their own areas. As for those lovely pear trees–about a dozen were planted in my neighborhood and they all disappeared with one nasty ice storm that tore them to pieces. It seems we need to realize that we are part of and live in nature.

  3. Meg said,

    January 9, 2013 at 3:27 am

    In the summer, I have noticed cars parked next to the smallest and most measley shrubbery just to get a speck of shade in a vast broiling parking lot. I am always thinking, why not at least have some lovely islands of trees for people to park under. city planners should plan for such things. Its not about spots to park per square meter. Not at all!!

    • January 15, 2013 at 4:11 pm

      Yes, and the trees provide shade, clean the air, and coolness.
      I park in shade created by trees and the BIG Suvs all the time.

      • Meg said,

        January 17, 2013 at 12:11 pm

        I have to admit, I live in snow country, usually up to 300 inches a year, and the pirate has an SUV, we also carry our camping gear and canoe on it. We use my little flex fuel car for errands.

      • January 17, 2013 at 8:29 pm

        300 inches of snow! Wow! You actually need an SUV or heavy truck. As for canoeing and camping = color me green with envy! Waves to Pirate too!

      • Meg said,

        January 21, 2013 at 2:02 pm

        Sorry I fibbed unintentionally, Syracuse record is 192 inches, Fulton where my sister lives is in the high 200’s of inches. Where I grew up, slightly farther north and east is Redfield where it is well over 300 inches a year. Which is where I got that number. In 2007 they got 12 FEET of snow over about a week period.

  4. Simon lilly said,

    January 6, 2013 at 11:18 pm

    And the thing is, its that simple!

    • January 7, 2013 at 12:49 am

      You think so, Simon? I do. I might be wrong. But I think it’s simple and doable and possible if we’re willing to “make it so.”

  5. slpmartin said,

    January 6, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    Are there enough governmental leaders willing to really weight what is in the long term best interesting of their constituencies over personal gain?

    • January 7, 2013 at 12:48 am

      Are there any governmental leaders who really LEAD? It doesn’t seem so. Let me know if you discover one, Charles.

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