All the Trees of the Forest Israel’s Woodlands from the Bible to the Present Alon Tal

Yale Agrarian Studies Series
Publication date:
22 Oct 2013
Yale University Press
368 pages: 235 x 156 x 25mm
35 b-w illus.
Sales territories:

Buy this eBook

You can purchase this title from a number of online retailers:

The extraordinary story of Israel’s forests, from ancient times to the present.

In this insightful and provocative book, Alon Tal provides a detailed account of Israeli forests, tracing their history from the Bible to the present, and outlines the effort to transform drylands and degraded soils into prosperous parks, rangelands, and ecosystems. Tal’s description of Israel’s trials and errors, and his exploration of both the environmental history and the current policy dilemmas surrounding that country's forests, will provide valuable lessons in the years to come for other parts of the world seeking to reestablish timberlands.

Alon Tal is on the faculty of Ben Gurion University’s Blaustein Institute of Desert Research. He founded the Israel Union for Environmental Defense and the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies. He lives in Macabim, Israel, with his wife and three daughters.

“Israel's forests are small. But to anyone who reads the Bible their ancient history is of great interest. And to anyone who wants to reforest more of our deteriorating planet, the history of the last 75 years is instructive both for its blunders and its successes. This is a remarkable history of remarkable places!”—Bill McKibben, author Oil and Honey: The Education of an Unlikely Activist

“Alon Tal is a wonderfully engaging writer, and he has crafted a narrative that will have considerable crossover appeal.”—Char Miller, Pomona College

"Written by a rare combination of outstanding environmental activist and fine politician, this wonderful book describes the history and future of forests in one of the most human-disturbed areas of Earth. Of great interest to anyone who cares about the environment."—Paul R. Ehrlich, co-author of The Dominant Animal

“Alon Tal provides an excellent review of Israel's experience with one hundred years of experimentation in afforestation and reforestation and lessons learned. This is a compelling read in land use and environmental services in the Mediterranean region.”—Abigail R. Kimbell, United States Forest Service Chief [retired]

“The book is exceptional in scope and depth – I know of nothing like it.”—Gretchen Daily, Stanford University

“[A] must read for anyone interested in learning more about the land of Israel; in this case the trees that call that land home."—Michael Cohen, The Forward

“Tal . . . provides an excellent case study of what one country has done to rebuild forests.”—Library Journal