This is a great article. Being that all life on Earth sprang from a single genesis, this makes all life’s relation easy to guess. However, many people don’t know that if you go back in time far enough, humans (all animals, actually) and trees all share, well, the same family tree.
This planet has had several mass extinctions. The K-9 event is the most famous of such events being that it was responsible for making all the dinosaurs drop dead. The Great Dying, another famous yet lesser known extinction, killed a much higher percentage of life than the K-9 event. However, none of these completely eradicated ALL life. This means that, despite what most would have you believe, the fact that something lived through each extinction event is responsible for us existing today. Life never completely died and therefore, is all part of the initial genesis that began with single celled organisms about 3.5 billion years ago (roughly 1 billion years after Earth formed). Once cells began to form, Earth was covered in a slime which, ironically enough, hindered the expansion of life for a billion years. Keep in mind that the Earth was nothing as it is today. The atmosphere was much different. Bacteria formed and created an abundance of other things (methane, oxygen, carson dioxide) that made the atmosphere more hospitable for life as we know it.
That initial rise is the beginning of our collective stories. From this slime rose multi-celled organisms. From there, things like bacteria, algae rose and made way for primitive life/animals.
At the core of this fact lies the most amazing thing that we rarely realize – plants, trees, dinosaurs, fish, mollusks, bacteria, viruses and any fauna imaginable are all distant cousins, having arisen from the same origin.
So the next time someone tells you a cool fact such as how mushrooms are more closely related to animals than they are to plants, you can whip this one out.. humans and the grass you’re standing on, as well as the tree shading you from the Sun, are actually all very related.
I suppose you could also make the case that life, originally arisen from interactions from various rocks, gases and liquids, makes us related to the rocks beneath your feet.