Finding the Mother Tree

By Suzanne Simard,

Book cover of Finding the Mother Tree: Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest

Book description

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • From the world's leading forest ecologist who forever changed how people view trees and their connections to one another and to other living things in the forest—a moving, deeply personal journey of discovery

“Finding the Mother Tree reminds us that the world is a…

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Why read it?

13 authors picked Finding the Mother Tree as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

I love how Simard weaves her life story together with the story of what she discovered.

I empathize with her standing up to rejection, even ridicule, to overcome being an “outsider,” both for her discoveries and for being a woman in science. I admire that she is equally attuned to the details of how trees and the fungi beneath them collaborate and communicate as she is to the industrial, societal, and climatological implications.

Through it all, she expresses the message that life is sustained and shaped by a web of interactions within species and among them.

From Carl's list on a life in science or medicine.

I loved learning of Mother Trees and am constantly reminded of this stunning experiment detailed by Dr. Simard in this book to have groundbreaking moments in science paired with a deeply personal dive into individual self-discovery.

This book left me feeling as if I was a part of something greater than the individual self.

If you love children, I'll bet you love trees, too!

This book made me gasp as I read how smart trees are and how they take care of one another and other living things. In her engaging story, Simard teaches us about trees' ability to adapt to changing conditions, about humans' dependence on a thriving natural environment, and about our perilous future if trees are ruthlessly felled. She says:

"Listen" to trees. Trees "talk" to other plants, especially through roots. Trees have much to teach us about communication and cooperation.

Save trees. Trees are our comforters, just as deforested areas…

This is the woman who first discovered the hidden life and secret language of trees (not Peter Wohlleben who later wrote about this topic too). It was ecologist Suzanne Simard who made the discoveries from a lifetime of study after being raised in the forests of British Columbia.

This book is a dazzling scientific detective story from the ecologist who discovered the symbiotic relationship between the mycorrhizal networks of fungi and tree roots and how trees cooperated, healed each other, and remembered. This is her story and the story of her discoveries of trees wisdom and sentience.

She shares how…

Rare is the scientist who can write nonfiction that captures readers’ imaginations while taking them on a journey packed with amazing discoveries and loads of personalities - humans and trees alike.

This is a most delightful venture - one that grabs your attention and guides you into an unknown world of plant communication and intelligence (Who knew plants could “talk” with each other?). I enjoyed this book because it is as much a story as it is a scientific investigation.

Here is another eye-popping book that will change your thinking and offer compelling science in a format that is both…

From Anthony's list on trees and forests.

I read this for myself and now assign it to my students as an example of how even if we stumble in our ethics, we can stand up again and lay claim to our values. I appreciate that Suzanne Simard was transformed by the forest. And managed to trust what the forest was teaching, and follow her intuition, despite pressure to doubt herself and her insights. She shares about being a cancer patient and that journey alone was harrowing. Simard is a hero to me and because of this book I have rediscovered trees and learned to love them. Just…

From Rosalyn's list on people who show moral courage.

I heard about this book, after my book, was mostly written. But it did have an impact during editing and revisions of the first draft.

Ms. Simard weaves a tale that’s part autobiography and part scientific investigation—and she literally weaves her thoughts of trees, roots, and fungus and the interconnectedness of all the plants in the forest, into all her explorations of British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest.

I never would’ve imagined so much of this is true. It is such a change in perspective from the survival of the fittest ideas that we’ve grown up with. What a revelation…

From HJ's list on people who really hug trees.

Esteemed forest ecologist Suzanne Simard has given us the remarkable story of her journey through the working woods, the forest bureaucracy, and the academic jungle to tell us what we need to know about properly caring for our woodlands today. Through her life’s work she illuminates the remarkable ecological connections of trees to fungi and other life all around them, to the interactions among generations of trees, both older and younger, and to the health of organic soil that industrial forest managers have too often regarded simply as a medium for tree trunks that are stuck into the ground. With…

From Tim's list on important reads about forests.

Simard brings communities of trees alive as beings that communicate with and help each other. She explores the underground network of roots, fungi, and tiny creatures that send signals and allow healthy trees to help ailing trees and mature trees to aid saplings. Simard is a perfect example of how natural scientists, far from being detached number-crunchers, are deeply and passionately engaged with the organisms and communities they study.

From Ellen's list on trees, living and dead.

Suzanne Simard’s journey into finding a deeper understanding of the forest cracked the code on a truth that has been there all along. How many times I have walked through a forest and not in million years did I imagine those trees were talking. Not just talking but supporting each other in elaborate networks that uncannily mirror the way we humans take care of each other. Simard’s scientific findings are a beautiful insight, and her passion reminds us that there is so much more than meets the eye going on below the surface. This book about the fungal communication networks…

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