Tree planter, Sustainable forester and emvironmental conservationist Chuck Leavell




Every cause needs its heroes. And when this hero also happens to be a musician beyond compare and lives his life as an example of what he preaches, it’s perfect. We’re talking about Chuck Leavell, an American musician who has played the keyboard with the likes of Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Gov’t Mule, John Mayer, and has been the touring members of the Rolling Stones for several years. 

The 62-year-old rock ‘n’ roll musician’s passion, however, isn’t limited to his band performances. In fact, Leavell is known as much for being a tree farmer and conservationist as he is for his keyboard skills. Although he was always a nature lover, Leavell’s passion for everything connected to farms, soil, trees and taking care of it all started when his wife Rose Lane inherited 1,000 acres of land from her grandmother.

Today, the couple’s 2500-acre Charlane Plantation is an award-winning Tree Farm and hunting preserve. A supporter of sustainable forestry and environment conservation, Leavell was also given an honorary forest ranger award from the United States Forest Service in 2012. The same year, he also received the Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award for his music. 

As if Leavell wasn’t juggling enough passions, he has also authored three books. His first was Forever Green: The History and Hope of the American Forest which was followed by his autobiography in 2005 –Between Rock and A Home Place , which is considered to be one of the bet rock autobiographies. In 2006, Leavell wrote The Tree Farmer , a book for children. His recent book Growing a Better America: Smart, Strong, Sustainable has received rave reviews and has even been called one of the best “common sense environmental books for all time”. He also has his hands full with the Mother Nature Network, an environmental news and lifestyle site, which he formed with Joel Babbit, a PR and advertising man, in 2009. 

So what’s stopping you from planting a sapling, tending to your plants or starting a vegetable garden on the terrace?