From the air, Acton appears to be a continuous forest of trees, interrupted from time to time by smaller features such as meadows, rivers, roads, and buildings.Trees provide the bones of the forest ecosystems. The particular types of trees in any given forested area in Acton, such as oaks, maples, pines, and the rest of the New England tree mix, help determine the mix of other plants and animals in that section of forest by influencing patterns of light, wind, nutrient mix, and soil composition.

They also sequester large amounts of carbon in their roots, trunks, and branches, and continue to do so as they age. They are by far Acton’s largest contribution to reducing CO2 in the atmosphere.

Development pressure can work against trees, but humans respond warmly to trees in general, and often work hard to keep them growing.