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  • Writer's pictureMartin Ford

How Trees Make The Top 20 List!

Yet another cold winter’s day and for many, nature’s monochromatic grey-white scheme barely elicits another glance. The drab trees melt into the background and with so little to capture attention, you might not realise the many ways that trees benefit our communities. Here are 20 features that only trees can provide to improve city living:

DEFINITION AND CONTRAST to our cities in place of buildings and roads;

BIRDS AND ANIMALS – trees as homes and sources of refuge;

INCREASED PROPERTY VALUES – trees in front of a home can raise property values between 5-18%;

LOWERED CRIME RATES - trees attract people to public places and show that people care for

their neighbourhoods;

SENSE OF SCALE AND TIME - large trees imbue a sense of awe, often needing hundreds of

years to reach such stature;

COOLING - both through shade and through water evaporation on the leaves, literally drawing

heat out of the air. Trees do this essential function at minimal cost;

VISUAL and AUDIO INTEREST - dappled light, leaf movement, and sound absorption;

SENSE OF AGE and CONTINUITY as trees mature;

SEASONALITY - leaf emergence, summer protection, and autumn colour, all tell of the change in


COLOUR, FLOWERING AND FRUIT - enjoyed by humans and animal neighbours;

BENEFICIAL CHEMICAL SCENTS - provide associations of calmness;

CHILDREN PLAYING - from babies staring up into canopies or children who want to be outside to play in a tree-house;

WONDER and the feeling of calmness and joy which come with wonder;

CARING AND COMMUNITY - the skill to care for the trees translates into human care and a

sense of pride;

CREATIVE DESIGN - prioritizing plants and their needs changes design potential;

REDUCED POLLUTION AND WIND SPEEDS, and increases rainfall;

NATURAL BARRIERS - root systems act as natural retention barriers, keeping the soil in place;

COST SAVINGS in energy use during the summer heat;

TRAFFIC CALMING with safely defined pedestrian areas;


We will discuss many of these topics extensively in our upcoming monthly Newsletter. If

you want to learn more, catch the latest tips and tricks, or see images of what we’re creating and

doing, sign up for our Newsletter here to really root yourself into our Urban Cottage Landscapes



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