This Friday is National Arbor Day. First celebrated 1874 in Nebraska, this annual holiday is one holiday that proposes to the future, rather than reposing on the past.
Planting and caring for trees will ensure that future generations enjoy the shade, beauty and many other benefits of trees. Our greater Gorge community enjoys many types of trees, from towering firs and pines in the forests to the abundance of fruit bearing orchard trees, and lovely shade and flowering trees amidst our neighborhoods, parks and streets.
What will you do to celebrate Arbor Day this year? Consider one, or all, of the following activities:
1. Plant a Tree. Pick the “Right Tree for the Right Place”— consider the species and its size, and its size in 20, 50 or 100 years.
2. Mulch the trees you currently have. A 2-4 inch thick mulch layer will help your trees this summer by retaining moisture around the root zone and preventing weeds, as well as keeping lawn mowers and weed trimmers away from the tree’s trunk.
3. Learn the trees in your neighborhood. There are many online resources to help with tree Identification.
4. Take an interest in your community’s trees.
Take note of the trees in the parks and streets you visit. Imagine your neighborhood or work environment without trees, then ask what you can do to help care for the trees you appreciate.
5. Have a watering plan for the summer. While many native trees are tolerant of the Gorge’s hot, dry summers if we have a drought, watering trees will protect your investment. It’s hard to replace a 50 or 100 year old tree!
Karen Jenkins is a City of White Salmon Tree Board member.