What You See Is What You Get. This is a journal blog, an explore-blog, a bit of this and that blog. Sharing where the mood takes me. Perhaps it will take you too.

MenOoWaC; a post of Wellness and Concern

A couple of weeks back, I posted a 'menorise' about the choice of timber. It is old Gaelic wisdom, both for the carpenter and out of respect for the trees that yield the lumber.

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Mimi, at Blog4Peace, commented that 'trees are people too'. No argument here - or from those wise ones of yesteryear. Sure, it would be good if Mankind had learned to NOT use trees at all - or at least not to fell them for a specific purpose. Using the already fallen would surely be an honouring of their life. It would be lovely, too, if our leather could come only from animals which had lived full lives, rather than from those slaughtered for their meat, or only for their skins.

That genie is well and truly out the bottle, though. We now farm trees in the way we farm animals - for our benefit. Consumption of wood which has been grown specific to purpose is at least tenable. Here in Scotland, the Forestry people are in the process of transforming how this farming and harvesting is done. No longer the vast tracts of Norway and Sitka Spruce, but some return to varied forests and the inclusion of 'broad-leafed' natives as much as the standard pine.** It is now understood that, while we will continue to demand products which require timber, the trees at least should serve other purposes in their growth. Things such as better land management on hill farms, increased leisure areas for people to improve their activity and wellbeing, and that all-important component, 'air filters'.

Oh yes, dear ones, it must never be forgotten that all the plants of this earth, but the trees most of all, are the planet's lungs. They are also, like the canaries in the mines, an indicator of the environment's general health.

A problem is being faced right here by The Hutch. Yes, in Couthy Cowal our Corlarach Forest is being attacked by a nasty water-mould disease called Phytophthora Ramorum. The government sent us all a flyer and map with blue bits (forest parts currently restricted), red bits (forest parts being cleared), and yellow bits (forest parts hit directly by the disease).

It's mainly a climate-based disease. Its prevalence in the UK has increased along with warmer, wetter weather patterns. The western regions are thus more susceptible and, in particular, the west coast of Scotland. The spores can travel on mist, air-currents, rain-splash, via watercourses. But - and here's the kicker for all those of us who enjoy a bit of forest-bathing - it can also be spread on footwear, dogs' paws, tools, equipment, and vehicle wheels, including bicycle and mountain-bike wheels. Oh, yes, my dears!

Image courtesy of Scottish Forestry - KEEP IT CLEAN

You think changing the climate is all about cutting out petrol fumes and coal-burning??? No, as ever, it starts right under our own noses!!!

Now, cleaning one's shoes after such a walk is not such a stretch. Most of us would do that anyway, simply for cleanliness sake. However, it is also key to preventing the transfer of PR. Rather than traipse it all the way home consider cleaning them off in situ. The cleaning of bikes or pups paws may not come as an obvious requirement. However, certainly here in the Bonny Land, this is now being encouraged to aid disease control.

PR is not confined to these regions, though. It affects large parts of the Americas and many other woodland areas which present with the ideal climate. If you are a forest walker, biker, runner, 4x4 driver - THINK ABOUT KEEPING IT CLEAN!

** Although eighteen years old now, this PDF pamphlet gives a lovely history of Scotland's forestry. It was produced while there was still a 'Forestry Commission'. Now it is Forestry Scotland, and they have just announced their fifty-year plan.


  1. Oh no, even more reason for Gail to keep on washing my paws...
    Toodle pip!

    1. Hari OM
      I'm afraid so, Bertie lad... but more than that, her own paws too!!!  And the car's paws... Practicality dictates that one ought to check what the risk factor is in the forest and woodlands one is visiting so that going out doesn't become an onerous burden of responsibility. While this article concentrated on my local area, the disease is actually prevalent in oaks and other native deciduous trees. Worth knowing about, I think you will agree? Yxx

  2. Oh yes indeed I say here here x 87. We both have outdoor and indoor shoes.
    Wonderful informative post Aunty
    Hugs HiC

  3. We are feeling the effects of trees, the lungs of the planet, not being used sustainably. Thanks for informing us as to other dangers I had not heard about. Very informative.

  4. Thanks for the informative post.

  5. the mama is totally with you... even when we have a water phobia, clean paws are pawsome

  6. This mold disease sounds awful. Whatever it takes to control it!

  7. this is the first I have heard of this, and it is really a scary thing. thanks for the info

  8. I've truly not heard of this before Yamini, so thank you for the heads up. There is so much to be grateful for having our beloved trees gifting the world with their presence, and surely it is our responsibility to be as mindful and supportive as we can.

  9. I love the pdf, thanks for sharing!
    Peace to you! 🌎

  10. Humans' wanton abuse of our planet is a great sin.

  11. This is a post after my own heart. I love the forest so much. A wealth of information here. Thank you so much for blogging for peace with us today! Sharing widely.

    Peace to you and yours,
    Mimi Lenox

  12. the trees are the earth's lungs. Yes. thank you your thoughts and links.

  13. Our municipality recently planted 1000 trees. It made me happy. We are trying to let about 2 of our acres be full of trees. We need our planets lungs.

  14. Peace globe #10,479 in the Official Peace Globe Gallery @ blog4peace.com



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