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Trees and forests play a critical role in capturing rainwater and reducing the risks of flooding and landslides. Their intricate root systems filter excess sediment, nutrients and toxins before they enter waterways, reduce erosion and flooding, and shade streams so they are at optimal temperatures for aquatic wildlife.

Trees also absorb water from the air through their leaves, although a higher percentage comes through their roots. A large tree can capture and retain as much as 332 gallons of water! | SOURCE 

How do trees capture water?! Like us, trees rely on water to survive and so they have a few mechanisms in place to absorb water. Water from the soil is absorbed through tiny hairlike roots. Once it enters the root system, water is pulled up the tree's trunk to the leaves. 

"How does water defy gravity and move from the roots of a tree, through its woody tissue, and into its leaves? To understand this, requires understanding the inner workings of a tree. Similar to our vascular system, which transports blood throughout our bodies, plants have an internal network of 'plumbing'. otherwise known as xylem and phloem tissues. These tissues begin in the roots and extend upwards through the trunks of trees, branching off into the branches (no pun intended). From there, they connect to every single leaf. 

"How is water pulled through the system? Transpiration — or, the process of water evaporation through openings in the leaves, called stomates. When the water evaporates, it creates negative pressure (think of a vacuum) within the leaf. As a result, water is pulled into the leaf from the xylem, replacing the water that transpired from the leaf.

"Because xylem is a water column that extends from the leaf to the roots, when transpiration occurs at the top of the tree, the pressure is felt all the way down to its roots. This causes the roots to pull water in from the soil, and the cycle continues ..." | SOURCE 

| CLICK to see an excellent video about the water cycle in trees (4:18min)