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11 Baby Names Inspired By Trees That Will Grow Up With Them

Nature-inspired baby names have been in and out of style since... well, probably since people started having names, considering nature was one of the only sources of inspo back then. They're still just as relevant today, however, as more and more people turn their attention to the environment (and how to save it). And why not? There are so many earthy ideas to choose from, it can even be tough to narrow it down — unless you pick a specific area and focus on it. So what are some tree inspired baby names that will give your little one a strong set of roots... and keep on growing right along with her?

You could go with another aspect of the natural world, of course. There are weather names (i.e., Kylie's daughter Stormi), names borrowed from the planets and stars (Orion, Sirius), names taken from rivers and mountains (Nile, Everest), even names that mean "earth" (Gaea, Kai). But trees are symbolic of so many things: strength, transformation, renewal, protection, and life itself. Giving your child the name of one of these majestic forest dwellers is like gifting her with a deep connection to the ground beneath her feet, while encouraging her to reach for the sky.

Another plus? While unusual names in general are becoming more accepted and appreciated, none of the names on this list are going to be so common that your kid will have to use her initial after her first name in kindergarten to distinguish herself from the other two students with her name. And who knows? With one of these distinguished titles, your kid might even grow up and make it her personal mission to rebuild the rainforest. Either way, Arbor Day should be a pretty big deal in your house.

1Willow

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Derived from the Middle English wilwe (willow), according to Baby Name Wizard, "willow trees are noted for their flexibility and graceful appearance, hence the adjective willowy." Generally considered to be a girl's name, it could definitely work for a boy, too.

2Ash

A boy's name of English origin meaning "ash tree," as defined by Baby Center, Ash can be short for Ashton or Asher or Ashley... or it can just be Ash.

3Hazel

As She Knows explained, the meaning of this old fashioned-sounding English name is "the hazel tree; nut," and it became popular in the 9th century "when flower and plant names became fashionable first names."

4Spruce

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You might not hear this one terribly often, but that's part of what makes it cool. Nameberry called it "a handsome, spruced-up post-Bruce tree name".

5Laurel

Taken from laurel (an evergreen shrub or tree), according to Baby Name Wizard, this name came into use in the 19th century. Perfect if you like the names Laura and Lauren but want something a little more unique.

6Alder

A little-used name until fairly recently, as a chart on Baby Center showed, this German moniker (meaning "name of a tree") has a certain sophistication to it.

7Cypress

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A type of large Evergreen tree, as Baby Name Wizard explained, in Greek mythology the cypress is associated with the goddess Artemis.

8Cullen

Not just the last name of a hot vampire played by Robert Pattinson, according to Baby Name Wizard, Cullen is the Anglicized form of the Irish surname Mac Cuilinn (son of Cuileann), and Cuileann is an Irish name meaning “holly" (as in, the tree).

9Juniper

A girl's name of Latin origin, Juniper ranks #314 on Nameberry's popularity charts (though some might argue that a juniper is more of a shrub than a tree).

10Aspen

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An English, gender-neutral name meaning "aspen tree," according to BabyCenter, this tree name actually doubles as a location name. (Think Brooklyn, Paris, Chicago.)

11Apple

It's a fruit, sure, but it's also a tree (that's where the apples grow, remember?). Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin might have raised a few eyebrows when they named their first daughter Apple back in 2004, but it does have a certain charm.