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Trees - the meaning of life for Wharfedale's favourite son

[Wednesday 16 August 2006]
avourite son, the TV gardener and author Alan Titchmarsh, has revealed what he believes to be the secret of life - planting more trees.

Trees - the meaning of life for Alan Titchmarsh

Titchmarsh, whose was brought up near Ilkley where his family ran a plant nursery, reveals in the latest issue of Countryside Voice magazine that when he was asked to take part in a television programme called The Meaning of Life, he wasn't actually sure what the question meant.

Having thought about it, however, he decided that for him, the meaning of life was giving something back to nature - so he invited the cameras to visit a 15-acre wood he had personally planted some 15 years ago in Hampshire.

Some of the native tress are now 20 feet high - even the slow growing oaks have reached 15 feet - and as he explains in the magazine, which is published by the Campaign to Protect Rural England:

"I've never been able to shake off the conviction that the only way to pay the rent for one's time on Earth is to leave it in a better state than it was when one arrived."

His wood, he says, "helps me to believe that I have earned my keep" and adds: "Not everyone has the luxury of being able to plant a wood. But almost everyone can plant a native tree and I hope everyone does."

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