While the National Arbor Day observance is celebrated on the last Friday in April, many states have implemented state-recognized Arbor Days that reflect the best time for planting in their region.
Tennessee and North Carolina share more than just a border, they both celebrate Arbor Day the first Friday of March. We take a look back at how some of their Tree City USA communities have observed the tradition.
Charlotte—A recognized Tree City USA community for 34 years—observed Arbor Day with city officials planting two oak trees in a local park in honor of the retiring president of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership.
Greensboro—A recognized Tree City USA community for 23 years and Growth Award recipient for eight years—observed Arbor Day with a tree planting commemorating the 45th anniversary of Greensboro Beautiful. Greensboro Beautiful is a nonprofit volunteer organization with the mission to conserve and enhance the beauty and ecology of the Greensboro community through public and private cooperation.
More than 150 volunteers gathered to plant 45 trees across various parts of downtown Greensboro. Each tree was tagged to show the positive financial impact it has on the environment duing the next 15 years.
Nashville—A recognized Tree City USA community for 18 years—commemorated Arbor Day with a memorial tree dedication in honor of four city officials. The city also acknowledged National Electric Service for its fifth year of being designated as a Tree Line USA utility company.
Knoxville—A recognized Tree City USA community for 23 years and Growth Award recipient for five years—was granted the opportunity to host the state’s official Arbor Day celebration last year because its tree board was recognized as the state’s Tree Board of the Year in 2012. The celebration included an Arbor Day skit performed by local students.
Knoxville earned the state award for its work in completing the city’s first tree inventory and management plan for public property. The city plants about 350 new trees every year in addition to the thousands it currently manages.
If you’re interested in catching a glimpse of either state’s tree canopy, you might consider hiking the Appalachian Trail, where several miles of terrain fall along the North Carolina-Tennessee Border. Visitors can take in the miles of Oaks, Maples, and Firs that adorn the region.
While the national Arbor Day observance is celebrated on the last Friday in April, many states have implemented state-recognized Arbor Days that reflect the best time for planting in their region. Georgia is one of three states to celebrate Arbor Day in February, observing the tradition the third Friday of the month. We take a look back at how two of Georgia’s Tree City USA communities celebrated Arbor Day.
Atlanta—a Tree City USA for 27 consecutive years and five time Growth Award recipient—observed Arbor Day with a weekend of tree plantings along the East Side Trail in Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic District of the Atlanta Beltline, a sustainable redevelopment project that will provide a network of public parks, multi-use trails, and transit along a historic 22-mile railroad strip connecting 45 neighborhoods. City arborists lead project teams that planted 314 trees.
The trees will help to establish the Atlanta Beltline as one of the world’s longest linear arboretums. The city made it a priority to include parks and trails in the redevelopment.
The City of Macon—a Tree City USA for 28 consecutive years and 15 time Growth Award recipient— organized a tree planting in the Pleasant Hill Community Garden. The community garden provides fresh vegetables to seniors and physically challenged residents, and has produced an astonishing 4,000 pounds of organic vegetables in its nine year existence, including collard greens, cucumbers, and sweet potatoes. Community organizers had been hoping to plant fruit trees in the garden for years, and as a result of last year’s tree planting, members can now partake in the bounty provided by 30 different kinds of fruit and nut-bearing trees.
The community garden, which is maintained by local area youth, helps to educate the public on the importance of nutritious eating, and the effort required to preserve such spaces.
Georgia is setting a fine example of how cities can implement environmental stewardship within their communities through proactive planning. Atlanta and Macon each found ways to bring the public together for the common good. Trees have a phenomenal way of bringing people together, and helping to build community.
Today is Arbor Day in Hawaii. The Aloha State celebrates the tree-planting holiday later than all other states, with the exception of South Carolina.
According to Arbor Day Hawaii, the celebration first arrived in the then-territory of Hawaii in 1905, with the governor recommending that all public schools devote part of the school day to planting trees and scrubs.
The website is a terrific resource, with information on planting the right tree in the right place, caring for existing trees and recipes using locally grown fruits and nuts.
There is also a section for locating Arbor Day events through Hawaii.
The state tree for Hawaii is the Candlenut, or Kikui, pictured at right.
The State of Hawaii is currently home to four Tree City USA communities. The largest Tree City USA in Hawaii is Honolulu, population 905,000; the smallest is Schofield Barracks, population 14,428.