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Chapter 2: Taking Root
In spring the seed takes root and begins to form xylem and phloem. This chapter examines this miraculous system of transport within the tree, as well as the development of the tree’s stem and leaves and the vital process of photosynthesis.
Chapter 3: Growth
At the beginning of this chapter, the tree’s root system has expanded and has begun its relationship with underground fungi, which connect the roots of the tree to nearby trees. This chapter also discusses the many types of insects, birds, and mammals that now make their homes in the tree or use it for temporary refuge and explains the reproductive process, which begins after the growing tree has developed male and female cones.
Chapter 4: Maturity
The tree is now 250 years old and, like all trees of its age, has developed rich, complex relationships with other members of the forest, which are described in this chapter. It has also made good use of its complex arsenal of weapons against drought, insects, fungal infestations, wind, fire, and other stresses, and the chapter discusses this incredible defense system as well. By the end of the chapter, the tree is 500 years old and has reached maturity.
Chapter 5: Death
In the final chapter, the tree begins to decay and die. This chapter looks at the last stages in the tree’s life; as a snag, it is home to many species, and after it falls to the ground it becomes a nurse log for other species of trees. At the end of the chapter, a new seed sends its roots into the ground and begins a new story.
"Tree" is David Suzuki's best and most personal book. Suzuki is a biologist and a science popularizer. He had a long-running PBS series on science. Here he writes about a single tree, a Douglas-fir, the tree he sees walking to the beach from his vacation cottage in British Columbia. The birth, life, and death of this single tree comes alive through vivid narration interspersed with science lectures. "Tree" is illustrated with lovely line drawings.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.