Our Past, Present and Future Relationship with Forests

  • An engaging historical overview and forward-looking account of our profound relationship with trees.
  • Reveals the complexities, controversies, challenges and solutions of forest restoration.
  • Includes cutting-edge science and ancient wisdom to reveal how to restore forests.

    • I very much enjoyed reading this belter of a book. Timely and important, it is both a paean to the power and beauty of trees and a call to arms.
      —Dr George McGavin, entomologist, broadcaster and President of the Dorset Wildlife Trust
    • botany
    • Coming Soon
    • conservation
    • ecology
    • ecosystem
    • forest
    • trees


    As we clear millions of hectares of forests globally, the challenge of restoring these precious ecosystems becomes ever more pressing.

    This original, topical and engaging book navigates the intricate web of forest restoration. It reveals how a nuanced approach is required – one that integrates the latest scientific advancements (for instance in microbial ecology, acoustic technology and epigenetics), Indigenous leadership and a holistic understanding of the interconnectedness of life within these vital ecosystems.

    Treewilding asks us to reflect on our relationship with trees and how we must see the woods (complex social and ecological systems) for the wood (timber) – a realisation that is perhaps the biggest ‘secret’ to restoring nature.

    DOI: 10.53061/GBOY6819

    Table of Contents

    Introduction: Seeing the Woods for the Wood

    1. A Brief History of Forests
    2. A Brief History of Deforestation
    3. The Social Importance of Trees
    4. The Ecological Importance of Trees

    5. Forest Restoration
    6. Natural Regeneration
    7. Chernobyl’s Red Forest
    8. Agroforestry
    9. The Miyawaki Method

    10. The Trillion Trees Controversy
    11. Greenwashing Galore
    12. Sea of Tree Guards

    13. Trees and their Invisible ‘Friends’
    14. Senses and Memory
    15. Dark Emu: An Indigenous Perspective
    16. Restoring Forests in a Changing Climate
    17. Future Forests and Tomorrow’s Guardians

    Conclusion: Let Trees Be Thy Teachers
    Afterthoughts: Insights from Environmental Psychology


    • A wonderfully lyrical, yet scientifically rigorous and wide-ranging exploration of the way trees enrich our lives. Importantly, Jake Robinson identifies the biological and psychological imperatives to properly restore our lost forests, and the myriad life forms they encompass. Go sit under a tree and read this book today!
      —Mike Bossley, conservationist and former director of Greenpeace Australia
    • Treewilding is a major addition to literature on inter-relationships between people, trees, and forests. It takes a broad sweep through environmental and cultural histories of the forest and impacts of deforestation. The author then looks to future restoration with a context of social and ecological values. The book is an important, innovative, and hugely stimulating contribution that demands to be widely read.
      —Professor Ian D. Rotherham, Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam University
    • I very much enjoyed reading this belter of a book. Timely and important, it is both a paean to the power and beauty of trees and a call to arms. Let trees be thy teachers and this book be your guide.
      —Dr George McGavin, entomologist, broadcaster and President of the Dorset Wildlife Trust
    • Electrifying and insightful! With personal anecdotes and scientific rigour, Robinson charts our course to a more symbiotic existence with forests. Like the dendritic branching structures it so beautifully describes, Treewilding takes us on a journey through time, revealing the relationship between humans and trees is both ancient and complex - one that we break at our peril.
      —Tim Jarvis, adventurer and environmental scientist
    • A characterful and informative exploration. —Tristan Gooley, author of How to Read a Tree
    • There has never been a more important time for the world to understand trees.
      —Bruce Pascoe, author of Dark Emu
    • Treewilding is captivating. Each one of us senses a powerful connection with the nature that shines all around us, even if we cannot articulate it. Jake does so beautifully in this wonderful book.
      —Ben Goldsmith, environmentalist and author of God is an Octopus
    • Robinson depicts precisely and gracefully how trees and forests are interconnected with each other and with the world, from the smallest to the largest scale, in imaginable and unimaginable ways. The book is, while being scientifically thorough, an invitation to sense, feel and appreciate this interconnectedness... it is impossible to be unenthusiastic about this wonderful book.
      —Hanna Bjørgaas, author of Secret Life of the City

    About the Author

    Jake M. Robinson is a British microbial and restoration ecologist based in Australia. In 2021, he received a PhD from the University of Sheffield. He enjoys researching microbes, ecosystems, social equity issues, and ways to conserve and restore nature. Treewilding is his second book. Invisible Friends was Jake’s first book. It’s all about how microbes shape our lives and the world around us.

    Bibliographic Information

    • 336 pages
    • BISAC SCI011000, NAT011000, NAT026000