Type in what your trying to find.


Solastalgia – our memories of the tree-filled landscapes now lost forever



September 22, 2015

Chalara dieback on ash tree Photo Jonas BarandunAs ash dieback marches across the UK, Helen MacDonald writes beautifully and evocatively in the New York Times Magazine of the treed landscapes we have lost forever – the elm, the American chestnut and now the ash. There’s even a word now for our memories of that natural world we’ve lost – solastalgia.

GardenDrum first reported UK ash dieback in September 2012, and subsequently published more information and a comprehensive guide to identifying chalara ash dieback.

It is sad beyond belief to think that soon there will no more ash groves as celebrated in the traditional ballad, sung in this very beautiful version by English soprano Laura Wright.

In Australia we have the growing threat of myrtle rust, which will probably cause extinctions among our iconic Myrtaceae plants, such as paperbarks and native guava, as profiled by Dr Brett Summerell. Added to that is the constant clearing of mostly native vegetation from our Sydney suburbs using the 10/50 clearing laws, in the pretence that it’s ‘fire hazard reduction’.

Solastalgia indeed.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
1 Comment
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
7 years ago

‘Solastalgia’ – what a poignant idea. Nostalgia for many things underwrites much of our daily motivation for living. Without we are ‘lost out here in the stars’ to quote Vince Jones.

There is a small amount of solace to be found in the fact that the human population will stabilise eventually and start to shrink and in less than a thousand years some stability will return to the natural cycles as long as we correct the current descent into climate chaos.