arborist

part of my prescribed healing process is learning to celebrate my accomplishments. this past week i did something huge – i passed the international society of arboriculture’s exam to become a certified arborist! i’m now a bonafide tree hugger – ha. in seriousness, this was a very difficult test that covered tree biology, specimen selection and establishment, pruning and support systems, plant health care, urban forestry, and the most awesome, climbing and working in trees. 

passing the test was awesome and all, but i learned so much over the last year as i spent more time with trees and prepared for the exam. here are a few of my favorite things i learned:

  • trees pull water up into the canopy from their roots by methods we still don’t understand. somehow they are able to work against tons of atmospheric pressure to supply the canopy with water.
  • trees respond to wounds and other damage using a method called compartmentalization. the tree is able to identify the wound and quickly produce wood/ walls to keep the wound from spreading into the rest of the tree.
  • trees are the winners when it comes to carbon sequestration, sequestering on average 50lbs of CO2 per tree per year. trees form a ‘green infrastructure’ that acutally appreciates over time, versus grey infrastructure like roads and buildings that depreciate over time.

also, much to andrew’s dismay, i think becoming a tree climber might be my life calling? if only i could find somewhere to train…

the best part of passing the test was that eva and brad came over to celebrate with us. we made a huge tray of vegan kale and potato enchiladas, guac, and refried beans. we drank sparkling pomengranate cider and mead. i even bought myself my very first tarot deck as a celebratory offering!

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