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Save The Redwoods

Every summer for 3 or four years now, I attend a family camp in beautiful Mt. Hermon, California, which happens to be smack dab in the middle of a huge redwood forest.For the first time in my life, about 2 years ago, I went on a redwood canopy tour, which is a series of 10 or so zip lines from tree to tree.

After our tour group completed a half hour training on safety and precautions, we donned our gear and started the hike up to a rope bridge that went onto the first platform. As I stepped on to the platform (the lowest of all of them) which was about 50 or so feet up a huge Sequoia, I was struck with awe.

The beautiful giants were so amazing, especially when I could actually see how tall they were, there wasn’t much i could do but gape in wonderment.

We felt the tree sway a little, and one of our tour guides said it perfectly natural and common. If it didn’t move, then it would be dead. She explained how the roots of the entire forest were connected underground, and that they shared nutrition and water, as a unity. They give each other support with their strong roots, and because of that, they survive and thrive.

Except of course, if they are cut down. after finding out that redwoods are soalive and beautiful, it saddened me to think that when one was cut down, every tree felt the loss, because a link in the connection was severed. It’s like they are the perfect community, taking only what they need and giving the rest away. When one of them is chopped down, the entire community suffers the loss of a valued friend, and every tree in the forest has less abundance to share as a result.

I recently came upon a very touching and proactive article by John Muir, called Save The Redwoods. In essence, it’s a cry for action to save the majestic Sequoias from being cut down. If you’ve ever seen a full-grown Sequoia tree, there’s no denying the beauty and majesty.

“Any fool can destroy trees. They cannot defend themselves or run away. And few destroyers of trees ever plant any; nor can planting avail much toward restoring our grand aboriginal giants. It took more than three thousand years to make some of the oldest of the Sequoias, trees that are still standing in perfect strength and beauty, waving and singing in the mighty forests of the Sierra.”

John Muir

read the full text here

The other day, I was in my grandma’s garden with her, and she noticed a tiny baby tree growing in the wrong spot. She just ripped it out of the ground and left in the lawn to die, so then the gardeners could come and dispose of it.

I don’t blame my grandma at all, she doesn’t have the same convictions as i do.  But, my heart gave a sad little cry, yet I did nothing about it. Thinking back, I think I would have done good to find somewhere the baby tree was allowed to grow and plant it there. But I didn’t

My resolve, is to come up with five different ways to celebrate Earth Day everyday:

1. Kick the Paper Habit Completely! 
I am writer, therefore I use a ridiculous amount of paper. This is the perfect time to resolve to using every last piece of paper I already own, front and back until it’s not possible to be  used anymore, then recycle, and throw it out. The only thing, is that I don’t have a kindle or a nook or any kind of tablet reader at the moment…but that is next on my to-buy list as I’m sure I will save forests! If I have an urge to read a book I do not own, I will attempt to find an eBook version, borrow it from a friend, or find it in the library. I will request my friends and family to refrain from giving me books or notebooks, and instead to get me the e-version of it. I can do this!

2. Stick To Daily Composting
I have recently made the decision to become a vegan. Being a vegan, I naturally eat a lot more food that can be composted…and I have space to do it in. Also, I believe I will get more exercise working with a shovel/ trowel.

3. No More Plastic Water bottles!
The idea of plastic water bottles confuses me. I honestly think it’s just for money-making .Plastic water bottles are expensive, whereas you can get water for free, tap water is in general NOT toxic (you may even get some extra minerals), and if it is…its as simple as buying a water filter for your tap one time instead of the lifetime recurring cost of buying more water bottles. I have a cute and highly functional metal water bottle that may serve me for a very long time.  With the rest of the plastic water bottles I have around that haven’t been recycled yet, I can fill with dirt and use for my next project:

4. Plant Something Every Week
The idea of planting something every single week was at first a bit daunting to me. But then I realized that every day I eat things with seeds in them, watch innocent plants (not weeds) get pulled up and left to die, and pass by incredibly cheap packets of seeds at the store. I will teach myself how, where, and when to plant things, and how to grow things indoor when its cold. Once I have lots of pretty/useful plants in reused containers, reused plastic bags, etc., I will sell them cheaply, or even give them away and offer to plant them in that person’s home. To me, this sounds like an incredibly selfless, fun, and fulfilling hobby. Plus, it will put my compost to good use!

5. Write More Articles Like This One
My natural talent is writing, and I know I have the ability to share to bring awareness and call people to action. This is what I was meant for! I have a strong passion to write about things that convict me, so they might convict others, I love our Mother nature, as she loves us , so I will put conscious effort, creativity, time, and love into material that inspires others to treat her with respect.

Was there anything in this post that pulled your heartstrings, or urged you to do something positive for the Earth? Take action! It is one thing to feel emotion, it is another to act on it. Maybe we cannot all Save the Redwoods, but we can sure as hell try.

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