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Does the Tree in Your Garden Help You Breathe Better?|||breathe better|a lot of trees|light on plant|tree providing shade


Does the Tree in Your Garden Help You Breathe Better?

Just taking a look around your immediate environment will be enough to underscore the sheer importance of trees to humans. Trees began growing on dry land more than 300 million years ago and since then have been adapting the world to make a suitable home for animals of all types and are instrumental in helping us breathe better.

Breathe Better with More Trees

While it may not seem important and might not even look like much, the single tree in your garden is busy keeping its immediate atmosphere healthy and benefitting you directly in many important ways.

Our own tree-swinging ancestors found food, shelter, and many medicinal and therapeutic values from trees, and their importance has not diminished much over the years. Today there are over 3 trillion trees on the planet, and each one is engaged in a daunting struggle to keep the world and environment perfectly balanced.

Experts suggest that a $10 Million project to increase the number of trees in the most affected cities of the world will improve the breathable air for 68 million people and protect 77 million from other dangers associated with urban environments. The following are the most important ways the tree in your yard helps you breathe easier: 1

a lot of trees Trees Improve Air Quality

In natural surroundings, the structural design of trees functions as a windbreaker, providing shelter to delicate life forms and keeping nutrients tied into the soil. In the city, having these windbreakers around your home or neighborhood can increase the efficiency of your energy expenses, lowering your home’s carbon footprint.

Deciduous trees perform this function with exquisite precision. In the summer, the thick foliage of the trees can break the rays of the sun, keeping your home cool. When the leaves fall away in the cooler months, the sun’s rays are allowed to warm the interior of the home and save on heating. Energy saved means fewer carbon emissions and cleaner air.

In addition to windbreakers, trees are also massive air filters, with the largest and healthiest trees performing much of this essential task. Dust and all sorts of airborne contaminants are collected from the passing wind and washed to the floor beneath the tree, where they can be processed properly.

Pollutants like sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen dioxide, are all found in large amounts in the big city and surrounding areas. These contaminants are also very harmful to human health and a primary cause of lung disease and secondary cause of many more conditions.

Trees not only filter these elements from the air but can actually encapsulate or transform these harmful elements, keeping them from causing you harm. As the front line of defense against the dark powers of pollution and urban toxins, trees are totems of good health and an excellent addition to your yard.

light on plant Trees Produce Oxygen

Animal and plant life is quite literally locked at the lips and survive by inhaling the exhalation of the other. Through the process of photosynthesis, plants collect the light of the sun and produce fuel in the form of sugars. Oxygen is an important byproduct of this process and essential to all life on the planet. The single tree in your backyard has the capacity of producing enough oxygen for ten people in its lifetime.

tree providing shade Trees Provide Shade and Cooling

Without the cooling and shady nature of trees, the heat of the sun can become unbearable. The asphalt and concrete environment soaks up the solar warmth and often retains it till the next day. When summer rolls around, the city can become a ponderous thermal mass and many city dwellers die each year in the wake of heat waves. Next time the temperature registers push past 85°F, the lush canopy of a tree can provide protection from the heat and heat-stroke.

Trees can prevent the formation of “heat islands”, small locations within the city that can be a whole 12°F higher than the areas around them. By including forested areas around the city and patches of vegetation and parkland within, city residents can breathe easy in the cool unpolluted environment.

Trees Produce Beneficial Terpenes

If you are lucky enough to have a Gardenia, Sweet Almond, Jasmine or Douglas Fir growing over your lawn, you will be treated to the highest quality aromatics in the natural world. In addition to the benefits listed above, breathing in these abundant organic compounds can reduce stress levels, improve the mood, fight various diseases and even enhance cognitive functions. 2

Trees and plants of all types produce a selection of personalized chemicals or secondary metabolites that serve a large number of purposes. Why plants produce these marvels of chemical synthesis is a fascinating topic all to its own. But, suffice it to say, these beneficial compounds are important if not intrinsic to balanced human health.

A-pinene is a prime example and one of the most abundant terpenes found in forest air as well as the delectable smell found in pine needles. Not only is A-pinene an effective bronchodilator, but it is also an anti-inflammatory. Essential oils high in this compound are often used to treat conditions of the lungs and bronchial tubes. Studies have shown a-pinene has cognitive boosting qualities as well.

Final Thoughts

If you have a tree in your garden, your life and health are already being benefited in more ways than you may be consciously aware of. Trees are important sources of serenity, calm and an overall sense of well-being transmitted through all-encompassing sensory appeal.

Photo credits: GregBrave/, John_T/, RandallVermillion/, AllenPaulPhotography/

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