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L'uomo che piantava gli alberi

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  6,588 ratings  ·  746 reviews
Durante una delle sue passeggiate in Provenza, Jean Giono ha incontrato una personalità indimenticabile: un pastore solitario e tranquillo, di poche parole, che provava piacere a vivere lentamente, con le pecore e il cane. Nonostante la sua semplicità e la totale solitudine nella quale viveva, quest'uomo stava compiendo una grande azione, un'impresa che avrebbe cambiato la ...more
Brossura, Istrici d'oro, 64 pages
Published April 2008 by Salani (first published 1953)
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4.23  · 
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 ·  6,588 ratings  ·  746 reviews

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Mar 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in its entirety (a slim 46 pages) sitting alone in a cafe in Annecy, in the French Alps. I was on my way to Provence that week, and I had brought this book along with me on my trip with the explicit purpose of reading Giono in Provence, already considering Joy of Man's Desiring and Blue Boy two of the finest French novels I had encountered, but I didn't wait. So I sat and read it, such the typical American tourist, in a cafe in Annecy le Vieux over a carafe of Jura wine. Afterwo ...more
After more heavy rains followed by flooding in Cumbria the recommendation to minimise further problems was to plant more trees. This was plainly a sign to write a review of The Man Who Planted Trees, a task in a way I'd rather avoid (view spoiler).

The problem isn't that I disapprove of planting trees far from it (view spoiler)
“For a human character to reveal truly exceptional qualities, one must have the good fortune to be able to observe its performance over many years.”

So begins this lovely story, almost a fairy tale, of a lone (not lonely) shepherd whom our narrator meets in a barren wasteland, tending a few sheep. He tells us he first met the shepherd while on a walk across a land where people must have once lived in houses that are now crumbling and deserted.

“I was crossing the area at its widest point, an
Steven Godin
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: france, short-stories
A magnificent but gently told short story featuring a narrator telling of just one man, shepherd Elzeard Bouffier, living at the foot of the Alps and the beloved countryside that he is clearly in harmony with. This evoked the feeling of reading a myth carrying with it a powerful message, that is written and inspired with total respect. The final few lines are some of the most moving I have come across.

"When I reflect that one man, armed only with his own physical and moral resources, was able to
Bionic Jean
Sep 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Bionic Jean by: Eileen
The Man Who Planted Trees is a magical allegorical tale by the French writer Jean Giorno. It reads like a fable, in which we follow the unknown narrator - an everyman - through a particularly dry and desolate area of France, “that ancient region where the Alps thrust down into Provence”. He wanders for day after day, sometimes becoming dangerously short of water. It is at a time like this that:

“I camped near the vestiges of an abandoned village … The five or six houses, roofless, gnawed by wind
This slender Provençal parable was – bizarrely – originally composed for a Reader's Digest competition which asked people to write about ‘The most unforgettable character I've met’. Giono's response was to produce this simple, bucolic tale about a lone shepherd who takes it upon himself to plant trees singlehandedly across vast swathes of the Provençal Alps.

The landscape which, at the start of the story in the 1910s, is desolate and bleak, has become by the end, in the late 1940s, a sort of rura
Lynne King
I had happened to see Warwick's review of this book in French and I realized that I had never rated it. My book, as you can see, is the English version.

A fabulous, tiny, simple book about a man in France who planted acorns.

The wood engravings by Michael McCurdy are superb and worth getting the book purely for that reason.
Arghya Dutta
For a human character to reveal truly exceptional qualities, one must have the good fortune to be able to observe its performance over many years. If this performance is devoid of all egoism, if its guiding motive is unparalleled generosity, if it is absolutely certain that there is no thought of recompense and that, in addition, it has left its visible mark upon the earth, then there can be no mistake.

An amazingly relaxing and uplifting allegorical story of a man, Elzeard Bouffier, who, in the
What a hopeful and encouraging story this is. It is about the difference that one person can make and how one positive action can release a chain reaction of ….Set from 1913 to 1949, it spans two world wars and, at a time when man is involved in so much destruction, here is a man who is building something.

When you remembered that all this had sprung from the hands and the soul of this one man, without technical resources, you understood that humans could be as effectual as God in other realms th
This is one of my all-time favorite texts. I have had a copy for as long as I can remember and I re-read it at least once a year and I let the incredible writing and the beautiful story wash over me. It never fails to make me feel hopeful and happy.

A very short novella, “L’Homme qui Plantait des Arbres” tells the deceptively simple story of a nameless man who was once wandering through the hills of southern France and met an extraordinary character: Elzéar Bouffier. This old shepherd lived all a
Sam Quixote
I think peoples’ opinions on this book are based more on the message of the book rather than the story itself. It’s the story of a shepherd who plants trees over many years, slowly transforming his barren part of the world into a flourishing fecund forest during the years of the First and Second World Wars. And despite the destruction the trees remain. The message - man’s capacity for creation is as great, if not greater, than his own for destruction. And godlike acts can be done by anybody, eve ...more
Nov 07, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After long, long consideration, I changed my 3 stars into 4 stars. It is awesome, inspiring, and deeply moving. This is the essence of writing reviews of books. I can understand a book more deeply. Besides, I love reading this kind of story. It has almost something to do with God’s Providence despite the fact that I have frozen my faith.

What lobbied me?

First, I liked the way Jean Giono himself introduced his story by giving us his wisdom.

“ For a human character to reveal truly exceptional quali
Nov 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Minimalistic, touching and heartwarming. The entire story feels like watching an impressionist painting in subtle earth tones with touches of green from a distance; it was painted not so long ago, so the paint dries. You can feel the sun warmth on your skin, sharp winds on the empty valley edges and see drops of yellow flowers on the rocks. Sun's shadows play under the trees.
Really wonderful, I wholeheartedly recommend this. It can also be read in no more than 20 minutes, so you really have no e
Hákon Gunnarsson
I like this short story. The simplest description of it is: a man plants trees to turn a barren land into green, lively one. He starts this mission when he looses his family. But it is a allegorical tale so there is a little more to it. This character is trying to make the world a better place.

While people around him are busy fighting World War I and II, by killing, burning, bombing and all the rest of the distruction that people are forced to take part in while fighting wars, he is not destroy
Oct 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
(Available in English as "The man who planted trees"; Original title: "L`homme qui plantait des arbres")

A very moving and poetic short story about a French shepherd who over dozens of years and throughout two world wars plants thousands of trees, thus re-vitalizing whole swaths of land and improving the lives of thousands of people. First published in 1953, the text has remained relevant, and it is no wonder that its author Jean Giono declared that this is one of his works that he is particularl
♡ Booklish ⛈ ☔Feelings ♡
For the love of Trees , please read this book


This book has inspired many people to plant trees . The book was published in 1953 and written by Jean Giono . For many years people thought the book was inspired by a real story . Even Giono's family thought that so .

The book describe the story of a sheperd Elzeared Bouffier . He planted thousands of trees in barren land . The writer visits him regularly and tells about his plantation work .

I myself a tree lover and love to plant trees . This is
Trees have been a surprise recurring theme in my 2018 reading. This spare allegory from a Provençal author is all about the difference one person can make. The narrator meets a shepherd and beekeeper named Elzéard Bouffier who plants as many acorns as he can; “it struck him that this part of the country was dying for lack of trees, and having nothing much else to do he decided to put things right.” Decades pass and two world wars do their worst, but very little changes in the countryside. Old Bo ...more
Onur B
Jan 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good enterance with description of unforgettable person, a peacefull person. He is planting a tree to whereever he reach.
Very nice and short story. Main theme of book is significant.
Lisa Vegan
I loved the wood engravings. The message of the story is inspirational. The planting of the trees/the trees themselves, wonderful. The execution of the telling of the story and some of the details of the story, I found less interesting.
Nyamka Ganni
May 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Nyamka by: Indra
Highly recommended!!
It really is an amazing story. Truly inspirational and wonderful story about the man who planted trees in solitude. He never expected applause, nor recognition for his miracle work! He just focused on his work silently and revived nature, all alone!!

Let's plant trees whenever possible!

Highly recommended!!
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a quiet story that has lasting resonance for me as I was lucky enough to plant trees in a barren wasteland of South India some years ago beside a man of simple but unwavering faith,and a young woman of unbounded enthusiasm,love and laughter, and return over the years to find wooded hillsides and crops flourishing beside them.
Beautiful allegory, narrated in such compelling fashion by the author as to be utterly believable - even after you find out that Giono made up the whole thing, even THEN you want to believe in the saintly goodness of the Alpine shepherd Elzeard Bouffier. Were it better known, this fable could well be a foundation text of modern day environmental movements - a bit like Carson’s Silent Spring, only different.

Gorgeous woodcut illustrations by Harry Brockway, that only add to the power of the text.
Jigar Brahmbhatt
Read this wonderful, heartwarming tale, and then watch the 1987 short animation film based on Jean Giono's vision of hope. It should take not more than three hours of your life. But if you'd ponder (or worry) about nature and what it ultimately means to us as a result, even for a day, you would have totally earned it.

If it is true that readers are relatively good at heart, maybe because they become more empathic by exploring lives other than their own, then it is to the innate goodness of such
Shuhada Ramli
Feb 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Inspiring. You can change the world with just 1 simple kindness. The narrative is very simple and straight forward. I love the book cover and the material used for the book. It suits the story.
Virginia Pulver
May 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My own brother is much like the protagonist in this slim volume - The Man Who Planted Trees shows us how one person and simple acts can evoke enormous change. Over the past decade, my brother (Byron Jeys Mawingo) has planted (or orchestrated the planting) of almost 100,000 trees on a barren mountaintop in northern Malawi(Africa). Jen Giono's novel is a quick read, but it will inspire you - and it certainly resonates with me. The writing style and the nature of this tale remind me, in many ways, ...more
Time to relax your complicated brains my friends. Grab this and read. Its just an ordinary story of ordinary man who planted trees. I didnt mean to complicate anything about this beautifully written book but i just felt something really lonely. A man and a dog out in the open planted thousands of trees. What a story? Wish one day i gonna meet someone like him.

Thanks to Indra for great recommendation.
Jun 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A slim book, almost a short story, but incredibly inspiring. The tale of a shepherd who devotes his life to trying to repair some of the damage that humanity has done to the world by planting forests, one acorn at a time, is a simple masterpiece. It made me want to emulate Elzéard Bouffier and plant trees.
Jan 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Inspirational. If you need a story to inspire you to overcome your despair or any obstacles blocking you, this is one you should look into, or watch the movie:

Oct 05, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I love trees. My family plants trees. In real life. But. If this were true, it would make a good magazine article in Outside or High Country News. Since it's not, it needs to be a story... and it's not.
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Jean Giono, the only son of a cobbler and a laundress, was one of France’s greatest writers. His prodigious literary output included stories, essays, poetry,plays, filmscripts, translations and over thirty novels, many of which have been translated into English.

Giono was a pacifist, and was twice imprisoned in France at the outset and conclusion of World War II.

He remained tied to Provence and M
“Creation seemed to come about in a sort of chain reaction. He did not worry about it; he was determinedly pursuing his task in all its simplicity; but as we went back towards the village I saw water flowing in Brooks that had been dry since the memory of man. This was the most impressive result of chain reaction that I had seen. These dry streams had once, long ago, run with water.” 1 likes
“Si uno quiere descubrir cualidades realmente excepcionales en el carácter de un ser humano, debe tener el tiempo o la oportunidad de observar su comportamiento durante varios años. Si este comportamiento no es egoísta, si está presidido por una generosidad sin límites, si es tan obvio que no hay afán de recompensa, y además ha dejado una huella visible en la tierra, entonces no cabe equivocación posible.” 1 likes
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