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on December 10, 2012
This book is short and full of important information about giant trees and how they are a large part of a plan to save our planet. It's an easy read and a very worthwhile one too. You will learn a lot. I did. It's scary. But, guess what... we should be scared right now. THis book calls us all to action. Please read it.
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on September 21, 2015
While the book contained some interesting facts on various trees and an OK long form journalistic narrative, it failed to live up to the "plan to save the planet".

If you're serious about this tree stuff, I would strongly recommend Mark Shepard's "Restoration Agriculture" instead.
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on June 28, 2012
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This was a pretty good book. The writing was done well. Most of it was interesting. Mostly I enjoyed the parts that gave information about biology and such. Some of the people involved seemed a bit...uhmm...different, and I couldn't really relate to that. Still, a good book, and I enjoyed reading it.
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VINE VOICEon July 9, 2012
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This book has something for everyone about trees; the science, art, spirituality, extreme tree climbing, medicine, healing, activism, history, personal stories, and more.

I was fascinated by this book because I've always been attracted to trees. My friend says a walk in the woods is better than therapy any day, of which this book proves that can be true. This is the first book I've read on trees, so I apologize for repeating anything that is well known to tree lovers.

"Trees and plants are far savvier then is generally believed, and are much more than sticks of wood with leaves." The author states and shows us why in this book. There are so many sophisticated chemical interactions, healing properties, energies and undiscovered knowledge. So little is known about trees and they are being threatened on many fronts. This surprised me, 54% of the USA lower 48 states are fragmented forests. These old growth forests that provide genetic diversity and resilience and adaptation are disappearing. The implication of this loss is potentially huge to Earth. There are many studies showing the benefits of trees. Intuitively some people and cultures know trees are valuable assets. One of the studies shows the people who spend time among trees have a lower stress chemical, pulse rates, nervous system activity, and are more relaxed. Another study showed the growth cycles of trees are related to the cycles of energies in the sun and other stars. Another study proves how tree roots clean up chemicals and prevent them from poisoning large bodies of water. It is conservatively estimated that one tree over a fifty year lifetime provides over $162,000 USD in ecosystem services such as pollution control, cooling, and soil erosion.

The facts and research convinced me of the significance of trees and forest. The emotional content a few times caused sniffles.

David Milarch story of cloning champion trees is woven throughout the book. It is an interesting story; it easily could be its own book or movie. It has lots of action, emotions, ups and downs, and hopefully ends in wild triumphant success. Restore the forests and help the planet heal is his mission.

I was fascinated by the topic and the book. Its great writing that integrates fact and fiction. A few chapters at the end felt disconnected like independent magazine articles.
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Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This quite simply is one of the most stunning eye-openers I have ever read.

Robbins tells us about David Milarch, who after suffering an out of body experience, comes back and goes on a mission to "save the planet" by saving our trees.

This book SHOULD BE absolutely REQUIRED reading for Everyone alive today on this planet.

We are educated regarding our old forestation Champion Trees and the desperate race to clone them before they are gone, so that they may survive through these clones the coming onslaught of perils that we are heading to in our future here on Earth.

I had NO idea just how very close to the edge we actually are as nobody really wants to address the issue either in Congress or on the Daily News Broadcast, etc. It is Shocking, Scarey, Breathtaking, and Most Highly Educational, and also Uplifting in the Great Hope that we are not too late to save this planet and it's ecology along with these great stately behemoths that have stood for ages and ages, hundreds of thousands of years, working 24/7 to take care of this planet and keep things in check, biologically, sustaining everything here within a healthy balance.

You will be moved, amazed, and feel great hope for the future here for both ourselves and every other living thing thanks to Milarch and his efforts to save these great old living beings, for truthfully, they are smart, remember, and have the capability to clean up this poisoned little blue marble of ours as NO other system or technology is able to do.

If I could give this book 10 stars, I would surely do so...it is important reading, enlightening, and needs to be given wide attention, perhaps even documentaries or a film or something to educate the world what Milarch and his team are doing here to save us all.

For those who have read and enjoyed this book already, may I suggest American Canopy: Trees, Forests, and the Making of a Nation. You are sure to enjoy this equally fascinating volume by Eric Rutkow.

~operabruin
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VINE VOICEon May 14, 2012
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Jim Robbins gave me a new perspective and respect for trees, and, as a master gardener, I already had a healthy appreciation for them. I started counting the number of trees that I had planted during the last few years, wishing that everyone had planted even one tree.

"The Man Who Planted Trees" also gave me a feeling of panic about the fate of our environment due to global warning. It was hard to get past the predictions in chapter three about the effects of global warning. E.O. Wilson, professor of biology at Harvard, is cited as believing that by 2100 "half of all plant and animal species could be extinct." Robbins references James Hansen in Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity as predicting that by the end of this century, "the earth is on track to see 20 percent of its species become extinct or be on their way to extinction." That's just around the corner! We are in crisis. Yet when I mentioned these predictions to my hairdresser, her reply was, "We won't be here, will we?" Such responses create in me an even greater sense of fear for the future. We must care for our planet.

"The Man Who Planted Trees" refers to David Milarch, who is on a mission to clone and plant the champion (largest) trees of the world. However, Milarch's quest is really secondary to the history and descriptions of the specific tree species and the ravages caused by insects, disease and mankind. We learn about the bristlecones, nearly five thousand years old and among the world's oldest living organisms. In the thirteenth through sixteenth centuries, the wood of the yew created longbows so strong that arrows shot from these bows could pierce solid oak and armor, making them the most powerful killing device of the time.

"Forests hold the world together." They create half the photosynthesis on earth, taking energy from sunlight and transforming it into life-sustaining materials for insects, mammals and birds. Acting as filters, trees purify water and neutralize toxic waste in the soil. Trees slow the evaporation of water and cool the earth. Trees are critical in our ecosystems and to us.

Robbins is open-minded and inclusive in this well-researched treatise on trees. He lost me in the discussion of the cosmic (spiritual and metaphysical) qualities of trees. Many cultures have viewed trees as sacred and objects of worship. He asserts that researchers at the University of Edinburgh found that the single largest predictor of tree-ring growth in Sitka spruce was not temperature or precipitation but "galactic cosmic rays." Then, Robbins considers the electrical properties of trees, and studies indicating that trees can feel and respond physiologically to human emotion. Wait. Don't take "The Man Who Planted Trees" off your wish list. "Mystics and Freethinkers" is only one chapter and shows Robbins' comprehensive approach to his subject.

David Milarch views his quest to clone trees as stemming from his Near Death Experience. In my view, the source of his inspiration is of minor interest. Of primary importance is his Champion Tree Project, and Milarch's devotion to achieving his goals and ability to raise awareness of the importance and value of trees. Read "The Man Who Planted Trees," then pass it on. Plant a tree, then another.
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VINE VOICEon April 22, 2012
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I found myself talking about this book to my friends a lot. It is so interesting. It is not only a great story (a man who has a near death experience and "light beings" give him a mission to clone champion trees, and a science writer struggling with the idea that the mission is scientifically sound) but there is a lot of information I've never read before about how forests work, the history of previously vast forests and what caused their decline or disappearance, and what trees do for the world.

And the author, Jim Robbins, looks at the value of trees from many different angles, like what trees and forests do for other animals and insects, what kind of chemicals trees release into the air and the consequences of those chemicals for other trees, for animals, and for the climate. The book looks at some interesting facts about the actual financial benefits of trees, from saving money on energy costs (because of shade or wind protection) to saving money on water processing (removing toxins from wastewater, for example).

The story was well-written, inspiring, and fascinating from beginning to end. And Robbins has a scientific orientation. He tells you what has been found in the research, and actually describes some of the research so you get a better idea of how these interesting facts were discovered.

Did you know it has an impact on the crime rate of an area if there are trees nearby? Did you know nearby trees have a positive affect on the mental health of people? Did you know a single tree provides about $162,000 in services, including $62,000 for scrubbing air pollution and $31,250 for preventing soil erosion? Did you know bacteria on tree leaves get swept up into the atmosphere and the protein from the bacteria give water something to condense around, facilitating rainfall?

These are just a few of the surprising facts woven into the story.

I live in the Pacific Northwest, where we have lots of trees. And I have seen people making a big deal about planting trees around here, like they're saving the world by planting another tree in a nearby park, and I've thought, "You must be joking. Does it look like we have a shortage of trees around here?" But after reading this book, I am convinced that wherever we live, we should support the planting of trees and the creation or restoration of forests. For sustaining and improving this wonderful world of ours, this may be the single most important thing any of us could do.
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on March 4, 2013
Takes one on a short period of recent discovery and history of the magnificent trees around the world and how they
provide unique sustenance to our world. Full of the improbable and full of hope for Planet Earth. Sit down and spend
3 hrs to suck in this astonishing piece of work.
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on October 2, 2013
FOR ALL OF US WHO HAVE FOUND PEACE AND QUIET AND SERENITY AND BEAUTY AND ABUNDANCE AND WONDER WITHIN OUR FORESTS, THIS BOOK EXPLAINS WHY. IT ALSO ALERTS US TO THE NEED FOR US TO GIVE BACK TO THOSE VERY LEAFY BEINGS WHO HAVE GIVEN SO MUCH TO US...BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE.
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on December 6, 2012
The role of trees for saving our planet is revealed. I had certainly never considered tree genetics before reading this. The science is solid. As for the alien visitors, you may embrace the idea, choose to disbelieve it or simply find it entertaining.
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