Author, Activist & Ecologist Connie Barlow: "Climate, Trees, and Legacy" Talk, Q&A, Booksigning

Peregrine Book Company Presents
Connie Barlow5:30 pm | TUESDAY, APRIL 15
Connie Barlow: "Climate, Trees, and Legacy"
Join author/activist Connie Barlow to consider how climate change is already calling upon conservationists and foresters to take unprecedented actions in behalf of both rare and common American trees. Barlow is the founder of Torreya Guardians, which in 2008 undertook the first "assisted migration" of a tree suffering from climate change. The group moved the endangered conifer, Torreya taxifolia, 300 miles north from its isolated habitat in northern Florida to the mountains of North Carolina. Barlow is currently on a cross-country journey, assessing whether and which tree species might next require our help in moving north as fast as plant zones are now shifting.

Learn more about Connie's work on her webpage:

"Fascinating, imaginative, and stimulating, The Ghosts of Evolution is a wonderful piece of writing-well worth reading by anyone interested in nature and its myriad components."
—Michael J. Balick, The New York Botanical Garden."

Connie recommends these books in her talk:

Rambunctious Garden• Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post Wild World by Emma Marris. My work, as founder of Torreya Guardians, the citizen group that engaged in the first action of "assisted migration" in a time of rapid climate change, for the most endangered conifer tree in the world: Florida Torreya (which we controversially, yet legally, moved to mountainous North Carolina in 2008. Emma Marris writes of our action in her chapter 5, "Assisted Migration." The Man Who Planted Trees

• The Man Who Planted Trees: Lost Groves, Champion Trees, and an Urgent Plan to Save the Planet by Jim Robbins. The work of Torrey Guardians is the theme of one of the species-specific short chapters. A connection to Prescott is that Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Prescott will have organized a hike (for me and any local folks who wish to join me) to reverentially visit Arizona's own champion tree, and Alligator Juniper, which became a memorial to the 19 firefighters last year, as that group eliminated excess brush around the tree just one week before they perished in a fire. But their work saved that champion tree from fire. Living Through the End of Nature

• Living Through the End of Nature: The Future of American Environmentalism by Paul Wapner. One of my papers, "Rewilding for Evolution," is listed in the references.
Below is a newsletter from Connie's team about upcoming activities in Prescott:

Considering Prescott’s “Champion” Alligator Juniper Tree — A Reverential Hike and Group Discussion with Connie Barlow, Science-writer, Evolutionary Ecologist and Climate Hawk

Connie Barlow, a climate hawk and author of 4 books in evolutionary ecology, led the first "assisted migration" of a tree species in this time of rapid climate change. Her group of "Torreya Guardians" legally obtained seedlings of the endangered conifer tree, Florida Torreya (Torreya taxifolia) and planted the seedlings in the mountains of North Carolina in 2008.

Meet Connie Barlow: Connie will be in Prescott from April 12 through April 16 and would love to share her knowledge and experience about how climate change will increasingly imperil even common forest trees, especially if the seeds of those trees cannot disperse fast and far enough to keep up with the rapid northward shift of climatic plant zones. She’d also like the opportunity hear others’ thoughts about climate change’s impact on forests.

Currently she is working on another potential "assisted migration" ceremony in which participants in the 3,000 mile Great March for Climate Action (, who will be passing through Wickenburg on April 2, will ultimately carry seeds of Alligator Juniper from New Mexico northward to the Denver Front Range. They’re doing this because foresters project that by 2030 that section of Colorado will become the ideal habitat for this species, while its traditional range in New Mexico will move upslope. The problem for the tree is that nearly 200 miles of uninhabited range now separates the northernmost populations of Alligator Juniper (in northern New Mexico) from the habitat it will need to occupy by 2030. So, how will it get there in time? It will get there with the help of an “assisted migration.” To learn more about Torreya Guardians’ controversial action go to Torreya Guardians website.

View Connie's videos on YouTube:
• VIDEO of Jan 2014: "Climate, Trees, and Legacy" (42 mins)
• VIDEO of Nov 2013: "Helping Plants Move North in Anthropocene Climate” (75 mins)

HIKE WITH CONNIE: Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist Congregation’s Interim Minister, Rev. Jacqueline Ziegler is inviting people to hike with Connie up to the "champion" Alligator Juniper (saved from fire damage by the Granite Peak hotshots, just one week before 19 of them died in 2013) and participate in a group discussion with her while she is in Prescott, April 12 through April 16.

If you’re interested in participating in one or both events please contact Rev. Ziegler at 928-379-7080 or as soon as possible. A date and time will be announced once a mutually convenient time for the majority of people is determined. Come. Participate in the hike, learn about “assisted migration” and join in the conversation about climate change’s impact on common forest trees.

Event date: 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014 - 5:30pm

Event address: 

219A North Cortez
86302 Prescott