3:7 And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and forgat the LORD their God, and served Baalim and the groves.
Groves, like high places, have been associated with idolatrous worship from time immemorial. The Heb. asherah, trans. grove means also the idol enshrined there. Deuteronomy 16:21 . This idol seems often to have been a sacred tree, the figure of which is constantly found on Assyrian monuments. In apostate Israel, however, such groves were associated with every form of idolatry, e.g. 2 Kings 17:16 2 Kings 17:17 .