As the earth begins to awaken; so do we! As my body and mind begin the process of renewal I am reminded of the “Trees” and how each year they start the process similar to us. Trees come in various shapes and sizes but all have the same basic botanical parts and structure. Very similar to humans in which each of us have the same anatomy but each one of us have a different spirit; which is our own individual fingerprint of life.
Parts of a Tree:
A tree’s roots absorb water and nutrients from the soil, store sugar and anchor the tree upright in the ground.
The roots of a tree are similar to each individuals belief system which supports them in life.
The trunk, or stem, of a tree supports the crown and gives the tree its shape and strength. The trunk consists of four layers of tissue and acts as the central plumbing system for the tree.
The trunk/stem of a tree is similar to each individual’s journey of life and how they interrelate with their environment and the people in their life; it is their support system which has many layers in life.
Four Layers are:
As a tree grows, older xylem cells in the center of the tree become inactive and die, forming heartwood. Because it is filled with stored sugar (food supply). The main function of the heartwood is to support the tree.
The Heartwood is the “infant” stage of our life. It is the core of our being and it is in the survival mode. As we will see later in life on how our own belief system and ways will support us on our journey.
The xylem, or sapwood, comprises the youngest layers of wood. Its network of thick-walled cells brings water and nutrients up from the roots through tubes inside of the trunk to the leaves and other parts of the tree. As the tree grows, xylem cells in the central portion of the tree become inactive and die. These dead xylem cells form the tree’s heartwood.
The Xylem/Sapwood is the “teenager” stage of our life. Our learnings from our parents/family have been taught to us and is now being assimilated to other areas of our life in which we can use and those that we can’t will die off.
The cambium is a very thin layer of growing tissue that produces new cells that become either xylem, phloem or more cambium. Every growing season, a tree’s cambium adds a new layer of xylem to its trunk, producing a visible growth ring in most trees. The cambium is what makes the trunk, branches and roots grow larger in diameter.
The Cambium is the “young adult” stage of our life in which we are continuing to learn and explore so we can continue our growth. We reach out a little further in our exploration.
The phloem or inner bark, which is found between the cambium and the outer bark, acts as a food supply line by carrying sap (sugar and nutrients dissolved in water) from the leaves to the rest of the tree.
The Phloem/Inner Bark is the “process” stage of our young adult life in which we begin to understand our gifts and will know begin to the process of the path of knowledge to explore, meet and understand what they are and be true to our belief system.
The trunk, branches and twigs of the tree are covered with bark. The outer bark, which originates from phloem cells that have worn out, died and been shed outward, acts as a suit of armor against the world by protecting the tree from insects, disease, storms and extreme temperatures. In certain species, the outer bark also protects the tree from fire.
The bark is the “middle age” stage of our life in which we have “strength” in our choices, decisions are based off of our belief system and we are able to continue to pursue our quest for deeper meaning as we now have the ability to protect ourselves on the outside so we can continue the process of growth and let go of events/people/places that no longer serve us.
Rings of a Tree
Every year the tree grows another year to reflect its age.
The rings of a tree are similar to our age every year; in which it shows not only how old we are but how wise we are.
The leaves are the food factories of a tree. They contain chlorophyll, which facilitates photosynthesis and gives leaves their green color. Through a process called photosynthesis, leaves use the sun’s energy to convert carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and water from the soil into sugar and oxygen. The sugar, which is the trees food, is either used or stored in the branches, trunk and roots. The oxygen is released into the atmosphere.
The leaves are the fruit we provide for ourselves and others; it is an outward expression of what we offer to the world we live in.
The crown, which consists of the leaves and branches at the top of a tree, plays an important role in filtering dust and other particles from the air. It also helps cool the air by providing shade and reduces the impact of raindrops on the soil below.
The crown is the “wise way” in which we come full circle and know truly engage in the protection of our being; providing support, encouragement, healing and wisdom.
As you can see as the tree begins to awaken it is a reflection of us as well. We share many things; yet each one of us is different and offers different gifts to the world. In winter we are dormant relying on our inner landscape to get us to spring, In Spring we begin to awaken, In Summer we are in full bloom and in Autumn we begin to shed what is no longer serving us.
I would like thank the NC Forestry for the above information I used about parts of a tree.
Journey with me and Discover The Inner Richness Within Process in which we work with the trees cycles.