It is fun to go to nearby state parks, the local arboretum, or even national wildlife refuges to learn and study and photograph nature. But, I also have a closer resource on hand – literally right in my back yard. It may not be the woods, but it’s enough to learn to start observing the world outside of myself by observing nature. Do you know what trees are in your back yard?
Why Learn to Identify Trees?
People learn to identify trees for different reasons. For some of us, it is recreational. For others, its about learning to landscape or manage their property better. Rich Mullins, one of my favorite poets and songwriters, used to suggest to people speaking of depression or anxiety that they learn the names of all the trees between their home and their work.
For myself, it is about learning to look outside of myself, and my world of screens and routine. I have to look – really look – at nature to learn from it, and this simple act of looking outside myself does wonders for my spirit.