Arbor Day is celebrated nationally in the U.S. on the last Friday in April each year. But for me, I think about celebrating and appreciating trees year-round.
My interest in trees began in elementary school when a science teacher took us outside to share with us their importance. She explained how they grew, how buds and leaves worked, and why trees were good. I also learned they had names: Maple, Oak, Walnut. So many to discover.
Our homework was to collect leaves and identify the trees. I still have that tree id homework and remember going neighbor to neighbor with my parents and grandparents collecting leaves and identifying the trees by name. It was the best homework ever.
Today I am still learning about trees and plants and I especially want to learn their names and identify them all. I keep plants lists of what I have grown since I first started gardening. I have wish lists of what I still want to own or experience by visiting one day.
Since I became a master gardener in 2004, I always gravitated toward community projects that involved trees and community outreach. The first profile on Plants Map was Cossey Botanical Park Arboretum, a project associated with my local master gardener association. This is partly how Plants Map came into being.
So to encourage people to celebrate trees year-round, I wanted to share just a few of my favorite organizations that plant, protect, and promote trees. I hope that you will learn more about their efforts and join me in supporting them.
And I also hope that you will plant a tree somewhere in your world on any day, but especially on Arbor Day.