Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 6: Chapter 4: Verses 1-15
The king (Pariksit) submitted : The genesis of the gods and demons, human beings and Nagas (serpent-demons), beasts and birds in the (very first) Manvantara (period covering seventy-one and odd revolutions of the four Yugas), presided over by Swayambhuva Manu, was described by you in a nutshell (in Book III). I desire to know from you the details of it, O glorious sage, as well as how and with what power the Supreme Lord evolved the subsequent creation (referred to in IV-xxx. 49) Suta continued : Suka (the son of Badarayana), the great contemplative sage ever united with the Lord, welcomed this noble inquiry of Pariksit (the royal sage), on hearing it, and replied (as follows), O jewels among sages ! Sri Suka began again : When the ten Pracetas, the sons of king Pracinabarhi, emerged from the lake (which was as extensive as an ocean) and saw the earth covered with trees (due to the suspension of all agricultural activity and the state of anarchy that prevailed consequent on the retirement of king Pracinabarhi from active rule at the instance of the celebrated sage Narada), they got angry with the trees and breathed out wind and fire from their mouths with the intention of burning them, their wrath having been stimulated by asceticism. Finding the trees being consumed by (the joint action of) wind and fire, O Pariksit (a scion of Kuru), Soma (the moon-god), the mighty ruler of (the deity presiding over) the vegetable kingdom spoke to the Pracetas (as follows), as though appearing their anger :-- "It is not (quite) becoming of you to bear hostility to the poor trees, since you are declared to be the rulers of created beings and (as such) eager to promote their growth.
Oh, the immortal and all-pervading Lord Sri Hari, the Ruler of (all) Prajapatis (the lords of creation, Brahma and others) has brought into existence the (various) trees and annual plants (cereal crops) as the (source of) food of the manes and gods (respectively), (Flowers and fruits etc., the produce of) the immobile creatures (viz., trees and plants) constitute the food of the mobile ones (the winged creatures); the footless (viz., grass and sprout etc.), of those walking on feet (the graminivorous quadruped); (from among the quadruped) the handless (the deer etc.), are the food of those provided with hands (the lion and other carnivorous beasts); while quadrupeds (such as the bovine species and other milch cattle) as well as the annual plants (cereal crops) are the source of food for human beings (the milch cattlesupplying them with milk and oxen helping them in their agricultural pursuits and producing their staple food in the shape of cereals). Moreover, how can it be worthy of You-who have been commanded by your father (king Pracinabarhi) as well as by the Lord (the adored even of the gods) to procreate children, O sinless ones-to burn away trees (that sustain all living beings)? (Therefore,) follow the path of the virtuous-trodden by your father, grandfather and great grandfathers-and curb your intensified anger. The parents are the (true) friends of children; the eye-lashes, of an eye; the husband, of a (married) women; the sovereign, of a people (and through them of all living beings including trees); the householder, of mendicants; and a wise man is the friend of a ignorant. The almighty Sri Hari indwells the hearts of (all) living beings as their Inner Controller. (Therefore)) regard the entire creation (both animate and inanimate) as His abode; in this way He will be really propitiated by you. He who subdues by means of an inquiry into (the true nature of) the Self, violent anger gushing forth from the cavity of the heart in his body is able to transcend the (three) Gunas (the realm of matter). (14) Add no more to the number of trees (already) burnt, helpless as they are, and let the surviving ones enjoy your protection. Let this excellent maid (Marisa by name), brought up by the trees (as their own daughter), be accepted as a wife (by you)."