Venerable Trees

About Venerable Trees

Venerable Trees is my term for the ancient trees and woodland pastures of the Kentucky Bluegrass and the Nashville Basin. My book Venerable Trees – History, Biology, and Conservation in the Bluegrass is an exploration of this rare ecosystem and the urgent need for conservation.

When the first settlers arrived in the Bluegrass and the Nashville Basin, they found an astonishing landscape of open woodland grazed by vast herds of bison. Farmers quickly replaced the bison with cattle, sheep, and horses, but left many of the trees to shade their pastures. Today, central Kentucky and central Tennessee still boast one of the largest populations of presettlement trees in the nation, found in both rural and urban areas. This rare and historic ecosystem is now threatened by development, neglect and a poor understanding of its biology.

Why do we call them Venerable Trees?  Read an excerpt from Venerable Trees – History, Biology and Conservation in the Bluegrass to find out.

Picture of chinkapin oak