Lincoln has been named a "Tree City USA" by the National Arbor Day Foundation for the 36th consecutive year for continuing demonstrated commitment and progress in managing more than 130,000 public trees along streets and in parks.
"The record drought conditions have reminded us of the importance of ongoing care and replacement of public trees," said Lynn Johnson, Director of the City Parks and Recreation Department, which manages the City's public trees. "We are able to continue to plant trees for future generations by selecting trees adapted to our climate and through the efforts of our staff and volunteers to provide regular watering for young trees. The entire community can take pride in having our strong commitment to trees recognized by the Arbor Day Foundation."
Having an Arbor Day observance and proclamation is one of four standards a City must meet to qualify for the Tree City USA designation. Lincoln's 2013 Arbor Day celebration is set for 9:30 a.m. Thursday, April 25 at Peter Pan Park, 33rd and "W" streets. The celebration will include a Mayoral proclamation, poetry, music from Hartley Elementary students and a tree-planting ceremony. A community volunteer tree planting event has been rescheduled from 9 a.m. Saturday, April 13 to 9 a.m. Saturday, April 20 at Ager Golf Course, Normal Boulevard and South Street. Those interested in participating in the planting project can call 402-441-7847 for more information.
The other three standards established by the Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters are:
The City's "2 for Trees" program allows Lincoln Water System customers to voluntarily add $2 to their bill payments in support of public trees along streets and in parks. Local nurseries and garden centers are sponsors and supporters of the program.
2 for Trees donations and matching gifts will support planting more than 250 new trees along streets and providing trees for volunteer planting projects. The donation program also has allowed Parks and Recreation to purchase watering trucks to assist in the establishment of young trees. More information is available at 2forTrees.org.
For more information on the City Forestry Division, visit parks.lincoln.ne.gov or call 402-441-7847. The website includes information on requesting a no-cost permit to plant street trees.
The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the nonprofit Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the national Association of State Foresters and the USDA Forest Service. More information is available at arborday.org/treecityusa.