Today is National Trees Day in Italy, a day dedicated to spreading awareness, respect and love for Nature.

Trees are one of the oldest living creatures on the planet and one of our primary sources of oxygen and food.
Suzanne Simard, a Canadian ecologist, discovered that trees are incredibly social creatures that communicate with each other through a dense underground network that lives in symbiosis with fungi creating the so-called WOOD WIDE WEB.

Watch this instructional video about the Wood Wide Web from the BBC, to know more about it.

Mother trees in a forest

In a forest, we can find giant trees (“hub trees” or “mother trees”) that coordinate and maintain connections between different species participating in an underground economy of mutualism: a real swap, between plants and fungi, with water, minerals and other chemicals in exchange for sugar and carbon.

This multispecies network (example of cross-functional collaboration and communication) also acts itself as a “courier” of alarm in case of pest attack.

Learn more about the scientific research of Suzanne Simard by watching this interesting TED Talk:

What can we learn from trees?

Win-win mutualism relationships are an essential survival strategy of the natural world that has been active for hundreds of millions of years.
Thinking about your relational ecosystem:

  • How can you turn your relationships into an “underground economy” where there are reciprocal exchanges of mutual benefits?
  • What can you provide and what can your collaborators offer to ensure mutual success?

Let us know your reflections in the comments below.

Silvia & Diana