Becoming a Tree City USA

Planting Trees Trees are not only a source of oxygen; they also offer beauty and distinction to the landscape in which they are rooted. According to the Arbor Day Foundation, trees add value to a home, regulate temperatures in neighborhoods and provide food for wildlife, in addition to having various other benefits.

As a country, we have been taking steps to conserve and sustain the presence and natural beauty of trees of all kinds. Beyond Arbor Day, observed the last Friday in April, the Arbor Day Foundation has a variety of programs to promote the planting, nurturing and celebration of trees.

One national program aimed at cities in the United States is Tree City USA. This program “provides the framework for community forestry management for cities and towns across America.” In order to reach Tree City USA status, communities must meet four core standards of forestry management. These standards include:

  1. Maintaining a Tree Board or Department
  2. Having a Community Tree Ordinance
  3. Spending at least $2 per capita on Urban Forestry
  4. Celebrating Arbor Day

More than 3,400 communities are a Tree City USA, including Sacramento, Ann Arbor, Albany, Washington D.C., San Francisco County, Salt Lake City, Denver, and Honolulu.

Becoming a Tree City has an endless list of benefits. Here are some benefits of becoming a Tree City:

  1. Increases public awareness of the benefits of urban forestry
  2. Promotes taking care of community forests
  3. Provides education to improve urban forestry practices
  4. Cleaner air, more shade on streets, and the aesthetic beauty trees provide

From coast to coast, communities throughout the United States are becoming greener and greener, planting trees and conserving our environment. Tree City USA is a great initiative, if you ask me; I’m curious how much it would take to get more communities participating as a Tree City.


Source: Arbor Day Foundation

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