Industry News: Forests

German Forest Ranger Finds That Trees Have Social Networks, Too

Wednesday, January 23, 2019  
Posted by: Dana Walker

HÜMMEL, Germany — IN the deep stillness of a forest in winter, the sound of footsteps on a

 

carpet of leaves died away. Peter Wohlleben had found what he was looking for: a pair of towering beeches. “These trees are friends,” he said, craning his neck to look at the leafless crowns, black against a gray sky. “You see how the thick branches point away from each other? That’s so they don’t block their buddy’s light.”

Before moving on to an elderly beech to show how trees, like people, wrinkle as they age, he added, “Sometimes, pairs like this are so interconnected at the roots that when one tree dies, the other one dies, too.”

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