Arbor Day is dedicated to planting, celebrating, and caring for trees around the country and even the world. More than a million trees were planted on the first Arbor Day in Nebraska in 1872. School children have been planting trees since President Roosevelt issued a proclamation in 1907.
Trees are the largest living organisms on earth and help with air and water quality. One single acre of forest can take in six tons of carbon dioxide and release four tons of oxygen. Forests cover one-third of Missouri. Trees are often referred to as nature’s air conditioner for their cooling abilities. The oak tree became our national tree in 2004. Congress passed legislation designating the oak after a popular vote through the National Arbor Day Foundation.
The mighty oak was the overwhelming choice of the people, beating out the redwood, dogwood, maple, and pine. Missouri’s state tree is the flowering dogwood. Missouri celebrates Arbor Day on the first Friday in April and National Arbor Day is the last Friday in April. You can plant these or help other trees this Arbor Day.
Make your town a Tree City USA!
More than 85 towns and cities in Missouri have earned a Tree City USA designation, and people who live in these communities enjoy the tangible benefits of having a greener, healthier community.
Every community, regardless of size, can benefit from caring for their publicly owned trees and achieving Tree City USA certification.
To be certified, a town or city must meet these four standards established by The National Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters:
For more information on Tree City USA certification, visit the MDC’s website.