It’s always exciting to learn something new, and we’ve just made a thrilling discovery. Have you heard of National Love a Tree Day? We hadn’t either until recently. The holiday brings attention to the way that trees improve our health by cleaning our air and water.
Do you know the mechanism by which trees clean air? We all know that having more trees means that the air is cleaner, but the way they filter it is fascinating. Each leaf is covered, front and back, in tiny pores called stoma. When gaseous or particulate pollution comes near the leaf, the toxins are pulled in by its stomata.
Fewer toxins in the air leads to fewer toxins in your lungs. Improved air quality leads to a lot of great health outcomes from easier breathing to a longer life, but trees don’t stop there.
When it rains, a tree’s leaves and branches catch water, slowing its descent the ground. This gives the soil more time to absorb moisture, which leads to less runoff into rivers and lakes. As the soil saturates, the tree’s roots filter the water by absorbing pollutants.
Trees Love Clean Water
Trees can filter out chemical pollutants from factories and pesticides from agriculture, but this doesn’t always lead to great outcomes for the trees. Eventually, they reach a threshold where they can’t absorb any more toxins, and they can actually pass the pollutants on to animals who eat them.
Polluted water washes essential nutrients out of the soil, so trees and other plants don’t get the nutrition they need to thrive. Trees that don’t have adequate water and soil conditions can become more susceptible to drought, insect infestation, and fungal infections.
Trees can have an incredible impact on air and water quality, but they can only do so much. To keep plants healthy, we need to give them clean water. More healthy trees mean better air and water for us, so it’s worth our while to work with trees rather than against them.
People Love Clean Water Too
Like trees, we need a clean water supply to stay healthy. The conventional wisdom is that we need to drink eight glasses of water a day, but not just any water will do. If your tap water isn’t sufficiently filtered, you could end up drinking toxins.
Most of the drinking water supply in the United States is safe to drink, but scientists have found traces of chlorine, hormones, pesticides, and even prescription drugs in tap water.
Exclusively drinking bottled water isn’t necessarily a better solution because there aren’t regulations for water quality of bottled water. If you’ve never tested the water out of your home’s tap, then you can’t be sure that it’s free of pollutants.
However, if you have a water filtration system in your home, you can drink without reservation. Ideally, everyone would have a house-wide filtration system that purifies every drop of water they use. Drinking water isn’t the only water you should filter.
The water you shower under, that you use to wash your clothes and dishes, and even the water you use in your garden should be filtered. Unfortunately, the cost of a house-wide filtration system is prohibitive for many families. If you can only filter one source of water, prioritize your drinking water.
Celebrating Love a Tree Day
If you’d like to join us in celebrating Love a Tree Day on May 16, you could plant a new tree or care for the trees that are already growing in your yard and neighborhood. Make sure you give your trees a big drink of clean water.
If you want to love your trees year-round but don’t want to raise your water bill, collect rainwater in a barrel. Any water you collect in a freestanding container is actually quite clean and is suitable for watering your trees or garden.
If you don’t currently have a home water filtration system and you’re interested in learning more, please contact us, Always Plumbing Services. We’d love to help you find the right solution for your family.