Inspirational content and beautiful images from Ancient and Sacred Trees members about how trees and the AST community are helping them in a variety of ways during the pandemic.
Discovering New Places
Lockdown has inspired people to explore much closer to home.
One of our moderators Rob Gaynor said of his local woods, "So many people have discovered local beauty during this lock down. The amount of people I've passed who explain they never knew this was on their doorsteps.. I imagine it's the same all over UK."
Rachel Gregory "yes everywhere is more busy. My walk to the river has always been so peaceful and now I'm seeing between 5 and 6 people each day."
Anya Tranter made a really good point on this subject,
"One good thing from lockdown...there are many, (and obviously many terrible), is how people are discovering the beauty on their doorstep. I live on a council estate in Exeter and I don't have a car, so often I walk in our local city valley park. They are a bit like a green belt of Devon farmland with cows, primroses bluebells rolling amazing hills (that's probably why they weren't built on.) In the summer they plough up fields and sow wild flower meadows for wildlife. They are a piece of my soul. Normally you see very few people, lovely sunny days everyone's into car and off to Dartmoor or the beach. They are spoilt for choice, but now you stroll and see whole happy families going for a walk and many more people.at first it annoyed me I thought oh great you lot that wouldn't normally bother with this little spot are infesting it and I'm having to dodge people. Then I realised it was a really good thing.people were learning you don't have to drive miles to find beauty. It's not something somewhere else. Corny but true it's on your doorstep. If everyone valued and protected the nature in their own area, everywhere would be a beauty spot.
Shelley James meanwhile managed to speak about the benefits of discovery and how trees are helping her.
"I live in London, and since the lockdown started I have been slowly starting to feel quite sad about the fact I am unable to get out into a forest or walk along a path with a tree canopy. Until I discovered this amazing cemetery near where I live. It has so many amazing trees in there, some are absolutely huge. It turns out this cemetery was created in 1840 as an overspill for other London cemeteries so that would explain the age of some of the trees. I have a couple of parks locally to me which are both beautiful, but it isn't the same as walking through something like this. I know that people in this group will understand the excitement I felt at discovering this place. The smell, the sounds of birds (there was a woodpecker somewhere), the shades of green, the sound of the leaves rustling with the wind, the coolness - I could go on. I felt such a deep gratitude walking along the path of graves and trees. I just wanted to share with people who will understand how this made me feel yesterday."
Amazing woodland local to us, have only just discovered it and it is magical! It's nestled on the foothills of the chilterns, next to the Icknield way. The atmosphere is pure magic, although much of the woodland is fairly new (less than 100 years probably) Laure Stapleton
Trees Boosting Our Mental Health
Joan Mould echoed the sentiments of many when she said "Felt a bit down this morning hearing we could be on lock down until next year. So went out among the tall people🌳🌳going a different trail away from the dog walking paths. I saw this tree giving hope. Although it’s roots are out and open to the elements it’s branches are covered in leaves x"
She also went on to say,
"walking amongst the trees close to my flat always picks me up, and video calls with my family 💕"
Anneeke Hine "walking in nature heals a lot of things I find 🥰"
Vicky Keitley "We will get through this"
Kristine Nickel "We are now approaching lock down month 3 in US...average time for most countries to be totally locked down...now waiting for first phase to open...book stores, theatres, and mandatory face masks and fines...and while all that has been happening, nature is being revived and gardens flourishing....keep safe."
Michelle Peal shared this ancient lime tree with us from Wincanton, Somerset.
"My friend felt inspired seeing this tree yesterday, that it is living and thriving despite adversity, covered with buds 💚A positive message in pandemic 🙏🏻"
Maria Goldberg "The description is perfect and it is at times like this when you see this makes you think deeply. Something very special about being amongst nature it really does touch our souls like nothing else."
Emma Duveen "My 'nearly home' oaks are now in fresh leaf. They continue to be beautiful whatever Coronavirus throws at us. Nr Guildford, Surrey."
Rob Gaynor one of our lovely Facebook moderators shared this light hearted piece,
"I've posted a pic of this epic old oak before but thought it would be good to share him again.. Heaven knows we all need a little something to make us smile at this moment.. So here he is. The old man of Ilston woods.. He can be found going about his business at ilston on the Gower peninsular.. His daily routine involves lifting peoples spirits, way marking, listening to birdsong and scratching badger bums.. 😊🌳💚"
The humorous post worked its magic as many joined in with the following sentiment,
Paul Searson "I now have the biggest smile on my face in days... Thanks nice one."
Meanwhile AST artist Phil Darby shared love and blessings ...
"In these times...."
Kayla Groves "I could never get bored of photos catching the magnificence of nature, beautiful thank you these shares brighten my day as a highly vulnerable to Corona in 12 week lock down".
Phil Barnett shared a poem and photo for Earth Day and led many to muse on our relationship with the planet,
Annette Zietzschmann These crazy times teach us to live the moment....what an adorable picture...mother nature.
Millie Williams Beautiful thank you nature will survive without us but we can't survive without nature x
Finally Nikki Senior made a wonderful tree connection:
Yesterday, whilst out walking I was truly blessed to connect with and participate in a transformational conversation with this old thorn. It was our first encounter, but he beckoned me over and regaled me of his wisdom.
Afterwards, I experienced something wonderful; I saw clearly, I saw symbolic beauty. Can you see it too?
"Fear not the end, for I too have decayed. Where verdant branches once sprung forth from my vibrant torso, now lay scattered upon the dry earth.
Fear not the sharp teeth of life, for I too have felt the thunderous vibrations of the nearby plough, waiting in anticipation of my skin being stripped from my core, becoming nothing more than dust at the hands of man's creation.
Fear not my child of the earth, for each part of the psyche deeply learns great wisdom from this ever changing cycle. For upon each ending forms a new beginning. Look deeply within you and I, deeper, deeper and trust; your heart my love, your heart."
Now can you see it?
N. J. Senior 13.5.20
Blessings to those which are experiencing uncertainty. May this bring comfort and belonging. May this bring clarity and peace.
Nature really does have the power to improve our sense of well being and has so much we can learn from.
Trees From Windows
Meanwhile other members unable to go outside have been sharing views from windows, balconies, doorways and gateways.
"No lockdown for nature! View from my bedroom window at my favourite Oak tree and spring lambs. I am truly blessed to be living here.....Update - can't believe my photo has so many likes and comments.Thank you everyone for looking and enjoying 😁"
He went on to say "I'm so grateful to have a garden, to have time for myself, to connect with nature one day at a time, yes for me these are the positive by- products of this terrible virus. 🙏😔😊"
Tym Groves "I love watching these beauties green up in the springtime, a view from my upstairs rear window."
Tess Smith reflected the unease of some during lockdown. "Sunset from my window. Very strange x"
Some looked at the bigger piicture such as Sharon Chambers "Absolutely over the Moon to see the pairing of the New Moon and Venus right outside my back gate this evening..."
"This is my first post - loving this group! A view from my kitchen window of my ‘borrowed landscape’. The Birds Eye Cherry at the end of the garden (with a leafless beech behind) has her spring blossom ball-gown on & looking splendid, as is the very old Perry Pear tree (I think) in the foreground. But the stars of the show are the mighty Ginko Biloba trees next door just coming into leaf - a rare group of 3 and quite dramatic. I get all the joy and none of the responsibility..."
Folks are picking up their paint brushes to connect with trees at their tables too.
Ancient and Sacred Trees Community Benefits
Kayla Groves "I could never get bored of photos catching the magnificence of nature, beautiful thank you, these shares brighten my day as a highly vulnerable to Corona in 12 week lock down."
Carra Si "Thank you to the beautiful forests, woodlands and nature for keeping me and my children sane, healthy and happy during this virus. We live in South Wales but close to the English border, so have access to some amazing forests and landscapes such as Wentwood, Forest of Dean, Wye Valley, Wales Coastal path etc. Obviously staying local and the moment but can't wait to explore further when this is over."
Julie Catmore ".. wonderful images of the beauty we are surrounded by. Thanks to everyone 🙏💕🌲🎄🌳💕🙏"
Sue Williams "Beautiful photo and I agree with you totally. This is such a wonderful group."
Ann Beer "Totally agree. Many people love ancient and beautiful trees. We are lucky to be able to celebrate them together!"
Tania Menegatti "What beautiful post, tree, photo and children. I agree with you wholeheartedly I’m very grateful for this group and all the beauty, wonder and positivity it shares. I love that you have taught your little ones to love trees. What a lovely mama you are 💖"
Jenny Quick Although I contribute very little at the moment I feel that having regular beauty is so uplifting so thank you Shelley and everyone else who shares their wonderful photos.
Diana Sutherland "We have chaos around us but nature resolutely continues, come rain or shine or corona virus. So beautiful, so heart warming. A wonderful pick me up. 💚🌳!!"
Helena Paxton "The people, and photos in this group have lifted my spirits so much. And.... I wasn't unhappy when I joined, but now I am on cloud 9! 🌥️💖"
".. today I recommended this group, to friends and family, and I just wanted to say thank you to all of you who contribute with kind words and positivity, with fantastic photographs, interesting experiences but also with heart for each other and of course for our beloved trees. 💚🌈🌎 May we all breathe life together"
We are now seeing friends inviting each other to be a part of our communiTree online.
Paula Greenwood "I have also joined this group on recommendation from a friend. So uplifting in these strange days."
Satyo Sullivan "Yes, it is a wonderful group. Thanks to all. 🌳💛"
Anita Elisabeth Capon "Even more so at the current time is this group so brilliant! When things are awful and you are feeling down, invariably someone posts something uplifting and calming to lift the spirits and summon hope. Definitely the best group and loveliest people. 🌳👏💚👏🏼🌳"
Catherine Edwards 💚💜🧡🙏
Anya Medlin I completely agree. I’ve just joined this group and it’s now my favourite place 💖🌳🌿♥️
Andrew Wilkinson "Welcome to the addiction"
Rachel Pendrey "I agree. This is fantastic group. Thank you all"
As a communiTree we all support each and members have been sharing messages of hope and solidarity.
One of our longest standing members Jamie King-fretts shared this
Kay Haytch I'm quarantined at home with covid now and feeling wretched, and having such a beautiful pic to look really helps! X
Marian Rodgers Oh that’s come just at the right time, it’s really lifted my spirits. Beautiful, thank you.
Angela Locke This is very moving! Thank you!
Cheryl Anthony Sigler From across the pond... but feel the same. This group has brought much joy in my heart and my eyes. Thank you all!!
Madeleine Massey Yes. I like the photos too, thank you everyone. And I am able to share them (to friends) and they are always very much appreciated many responses of Likes result immediately.
Shelley James ".. all of the pictures I see help me in such a great way. Obviously nothing beats being in the real environment, but, the posts i see in this group have been such a great support in making me feel better. Its awesome when you think about it, just photos of trees and how they can help, so imagine how powerful the trees are when you actually spend time with them in real life. Its magical xx"
Rose Jones "What a lovely tree and lovely words. We are all kindred spirits, its great to have you 😊"
"I am from Canada, I have been following your page for approximately 6 months now, as I have a deep love for trees as you all do... I just wanted to take a moment to thank you all for your beautiful posts, especially during this time of home confinement. They are always inspiring and often quite breathtaking... During my meditations, I visualize myself as an ancient grand oak tree, strong and deeply rooted, while letting the unpredictable winds of these times blow through my branches.
This too shall pass...
Be well, be safe and be like a tree! 😊🙏🏼💛🌳"
Shelley James"this group is massively helping me get through these troubling times. I take great pleasure in seeing everyone else's photos ❤"
A big thank you must go to my wonderful moderators who are all working hard to care for our communiTree on Facebook during these challenging times. They are Dick Coulthard, David Abrahams, Benedict Williams, Julia Hartley-Neil, Mark Werner, Todd Desborough, Lara Elizabeth Sargent, Abi Hicks Mc Leer, Marla Marcianelli, Lolly Live Willows, Selina Rose, Rob Gaynor.
Thanks to them Ancient and Sacred Trees represents social media at its' best!
A Happy Balance Online
Gaynor Summan "Thank god. This is my only page that doesn’t go on about covid or preach."
Come and give us a review on our Facebook business page and share what you love about the communiTree.
Below is another another lovely image from Phil Darby, a professional photographer in our onsite DirecTree, inspired to call lockdown a 'moment of reflection'.. You can find him in our onsite DirecTree.
Lockdown is bringing our attention to the need to look after our environment. Pollution has been proved to spread coronavirus and make people more susceptible to it. Trees can help us to look after the planet by absorbing toxins and carbon as well as providing us with fresh clean air and giving us oxygen.
So many feel the trees are sharing their own experiences. As Rachel Gregory said about social distancing, "Even the trees are doing it".
Matthew Stone "Like us they are being alone together."
Ancient and Sacred Trees, the communiTree where friendships of trees and people are carefully grown and lovingly tended. Our Green and Growing CommuniTree has so many wonderful members! Here was a wonderful message from AST member Jean-Paul Berkley at home. : "A Bright Beltain and Merry May Day to you all!"
It is Free to join our Ancient and Sacred Trees communiTree and always will be. Sign up to this website for Good News Letter, inspiration, links to our Facebook groups, tree planting and lots more.
Stay safe everyone and I hope you have enjoyed this article and that it inspires you to connect with our beautiful trees and keep in touch with your communities online.
If you would like to give something back to Mother Nature for the help she is gifting us during these terrible times check out our tree planting certificates, Tree planting ecards and 20 Trees For Eco Tees in our shop!
Finally a great big thank you to our wonderful members who make this communiTree the lovely place it is!