In Poland’s Krzywy Las, or Crooked Forest, a group of pine trees grows sideways at the base, prompting all kinds of creative theories about their origin, including gravity fluctuations, Nazis, and even aliens.
As of February 1st, voting for the 8th annual European Tree of the Year competition is open. This year there are 13 monumental trees from 13 countries all around Europe.
Early on in the modern era, the Japanese government began a program to protect its natural treasures. There is no better example of Japan’s commitment to saving their natural monuments than the incredible story of Ogawachi no sugi, or Ogawa’s Cedar.
Inga, or ice cream beans, grow plentifully throughout South and Central America, and in addition to their sweet tasting pulp, they have incredible soil regenerating properties that have the potential to combat destructive slash and burn practices in South America’s rainforests.
In a small geographical area of Morocco between Marrakesh and Essaouira, a one of a kind tree has grown for tens of thousands of years. Argan trees have long been known by locals for their medicinal properties, but in recent years they’ve gained international attention, with both positive and negative consequences.
In New Zealand, residents have taken advantage of the early summer weather by adopting a particularly festive local tree (Pohutukawa) as the symbol for Christmas on the island.
The Quindio wax palm makes its home high in the mountains of the Andes, and unlike any other palms can reach incredible heights of 60 m (200 feet) or more.
The Yew of Aginalde is located high in the mountains of the Gorbeia Natural Park in Spain’s Basque Country. Although they grow naturally in the area, there aren’t many yew trees left.
As fall begins in Malaga, Spain, the smell of roasted sweet chestnuts fills the pedestrian streets of the city center. In the mountains above the small town of Istan, the ‘Holy Chestnut’ has grown for a thousand years.
Alongside the neon lights and constant hum of Tokyo’s commuter trains, ancient temples and shrines provide a serene reminder of the past. Near the Zenpuku-ji Buddhist temple in the Azabu Ward, one ginkgo tree links to a time before time.