All roots form wondrous shapes as they channel for food and nourishment to support their magnificent growth above the ground. When they meet an obstacle down below, the root reroutes to a Plan B (or C or D…) creating an extraordinary puzzle in its path that tells a story of evolution, sustenance, communication and community.

Sfraga Saga Blog - Raphael drawing by Barbara SfragaI love to see trees when they come alive in spring and explode into a mass of green, some popping out flowers and filling the spring air with fragrance. But to lay eyes on a winter tree! Standing naked in its unadorned beauty, it allows us to see the intricate network its strength and stamina draw from. I love to get lost in the endless labyrinth, taking wild guesses as to why the branches went this way or that, sometimes making dramatic hairpin turns or ending up in a knotty gnarl. What traumatic event was the cause of this burl? How many strong winds did it take to coax that beach cypress into that wonderful Dr. Seussian shape?

As intriguing as it all looks above ground, underneath the soil is a fascinating, behind-the-scenes look of the support team that is at the foundation of this gift of Nature. My curiosity to learn more about the interconnectedness of all life on earth led me to the respective studies of U.S. ecologist Suzanne Simard and German forester Peter Wohlleben. Both came to research how trees and plant life communicate with each other – even work to support one another – in an intricate underground network that is the Utopian personification of “community”. My great hope is, that in seeking to understand those journeys, we’ll piece together the puzzle of how truly interconnected we all are. The more we learn about that, the more we will support all life on our planet. Just imagine if we could tap into a tree’s DNA for the key to encouraging coexistence and appreciation of each one of our parts in this great puzzle! That would be a giant leap in evolution – and ascension – for us all.