Trees

Smithsonian.com's Chief Digital Officer Shares His Favorite Books of the Year

Our own William Allman describes the 2018 titles he found to be the most enjoyable and eye-opening reads

Kiyomizu-dera Temple in Kyoto during the autumn season at dusk,

Forget Cherry Blossoms — Why Fall May Be the Best Time to Visit Japan

From mid-October to early December, Japan's gorgeous gardens burst with color

Trending Today

Why Fall Color Has Been So Meh in Parts of the U.S. This Year

A hot fall and excess rain robbed much of the East Coast of its annual leaf show

Viking tar kiln.

New Research

Was the Vikings' Secret to Success Industrial-Scale Tar Production?

Evidence suggests that the ability to mass-produce tar bolstered their trade repertoire and allowed them to waterproof and seal their iconic longships

Pando Grove in fall.

Pando, One of the World’s Largest Organisms, Is Dying

Mule deer and cattle are eating saplings before the clonal grove can regenerate

Smith spotted the elusive creature while searching for rare flowers in the Wondiwoi mountain range

Cool Finds

Elusive Tree Kangaroo Spotted for First Time in 90 Years

An amateur botanist spotted the Wondiwoi tree kangaroo in the remote mountains of West Papua, New Guinea

Why Texas Just May Be the Best State for Fall Foliage

With its rolling prairies and limestone cliffs, historic towns and oak-filled nature parks, Texas Hill Country is a land apart

New Research

Something Is Killing Off Africa's Largest Baobab Trees

In the last dozen years, four of the 13 largest, and likely oldest, trees have died. Another five are ailing

Europe’s Oldest Known Tree Discovered in Italy

The Heldreich’s pine is 1,230 years old

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Watch This Pine Tree Unleash a Huge, Fluffy Pollen Cloud

A viral video of the pollen explosion has touched a nerve among sufferers of seasonal allergies

Each caterpillar of the oak processionary moth have about 62,000 hairs that contain a protein called thaumetopoein, which causes rashes, asthma attacks and vomiting.

Londoners Beware: These Toxic Caterpillars Cause Rashes and Asthma

The caterpillars were accidentally introduced to Britain in 2005

The Nazis regularly used chemical fog to hide its Tirpitz battleship in the Norwegian fjords during World War II.

Norwegian Trees Still Bear Evidence of a World War II German Battleship

A chemical fog used to camouflage the ship impacted the trees, limiting ring development

The towering, 2,500-year-old “Mother of the Forest” (second from left) died after its bark was stripped for display in New York in 1855.

How California's Giant Sequoias Tell the Story of Americans' Conflicted Relationship With Nature

In the mid-19th century, "Big Tree mania" spread across the country and our love for the trees has never abated

Male flowers of the striped maple tree.

The Mystery of the Sex-Changing Striped Maple Trees

Yes, trees can be male or female. And sometimes they switch it up

World’s Tallest Wooden Building to Be Built in Tokyo

Architects are increasingly touting wood as a cleaner alternative to steel, concrete and brick

A British Columbia rainforest, where Douglas firs soar more than 160 feet, supports 23 native tree species.

Ask Smithsonian

Do Trees Talk to Each Other?

A controversial German forester says yes, and his ideas are shaking up the scientific world

The author Brett McNish and Fred Hay perch in a live oak on Sapelo island.

A Smithsonian Horticulturist Goes on a Quest for an Historic Seedling

A live oak tree from a South Georgia island community will one day enhance the grounds of the African American History Museum

Driftwood is a valuable resource for humans and all kinds of ecosystems near and far.

How Driftwood Reshapes Ecosystems

In one of nature’s remarkable second acts, dead trees embark on transformative journeys

The Magnolia tree, left, was planted on the south grounds of the White House by President Andrew Jackson in 1835.

White House Magnolia Tree Planted by Andrew Jackson Will Be Cut Down

Despite multiple attempts to save it, the tree is in bad shape

Aerial view of the Amazon Rainforest near Manaus, the capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas.

Cool Finds

Brazil Begins Effort to Plant 73 Million Trees in the Amazon

The experiment in reforestation involves spreading native seeds instead of planting saplings