And then it grew...

In 1987 a private company tasked themselves with demonstrating that closed ecological systems were able to support and maintain human life in outer space. The facility called Biosphere 2 was born, completely closed off to our atmosphere it had perfect conditions for everything inside. Plant, animal and human life. But when it was tested...

B2_history.jpg

It failed.

During the first mission, oxygen got to dangerously low levels, there were food and water shortages which in turn contributed to the breakdown of team dynamics. During the second mission, the complications during the first attempt were remedied, but the mission was still eventually cancelled due to a hostile takeover of the company and the numerous struggles for power associated with it. The humans involved not only obliterated the test but also lead the venture as a whole into demise. It was all over.

Failure.

Fortunately, that wasn't the end, and instead of letting the physical facility fall into disrepair it was eventually purchased in 2011 by Arizona University.  And during further experimentation, the university found that the facility was able to produce trees that had a much faster growth rate than what could be achieved in the wild. But despite this 'perfect' environment the trees kept falling over before they had the chance to mature. The only difference between earth (Biosphere 1) and the test facility (Biosphere 2) was a lack of...

Wind.

So, what does wind do for a tree? 

Well, when plants and trees grow in the wild, the wind continually keeps them moving. This causes stress in the load-bearing structure of the tree and so, to compensate, the tree manages to grow something called reaction wood.

Or in other words, the presence of wind makes a tree stronger. It stands taller, and its roots go deeper. It's interesting that the stress it experiences is what makes a tree strong enough to support its own weight and the weather that life will throw at it.

So what about trees? 

Rather than look at what causes stress and figuring out ways to avoid it, be encouraged to engage with the stress as it comes and to learn with others and as individuals how to make choices through it.

Because If you do... 

You'll stand taller your roots will grow deeper, you'll be developing into a human being that has a stable enough inner life to support you as you weather the storms that will come your way.