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February is the time to plant a tree for Arbor Day
Karen Bell
Keep Liberty Beautiful Executive Director Karen Bell.

Dr. Karen Bell

Keep Liberty Beautiful

In February, our state celebrates Georgia Arbor Day. We are celebrating Arbor Day on Friday, February 17, 2023. If you love and appreciate trees as we do, reserve a tree to plant, and increase our community tree canopy.

Arbor Day originated in Nebraska City, Nebraska, on April 10, 1872. J.

Sterling Morton, who served as President Grover Cleveland’s Secretary of Agriculture, was the founder of Arbor Day.

Morton had the idea for Arbor Day because he thought there were not enough trees in Nebraska. On that first Arbor Day, approximately 1 million trees were planted, which we feel is incredible! On April 22, 1885, Arbor Day became a legal holiday in Nebraska, where it originated.

One thousand children formed a parade on that day.

Every state in America celebrated Arbor Day, aside from Delaware, 20 years later. Delaware eventually joined the Arbor Day celebrations.

This holiday is meant to encourage people, whether in groups or as individuals, to plant and care for trees.

From its beginnings in Nebraska, Arbor Day has become a recognized holiday in many countries worldwide. Birdsey Northrop was chairman of the committee to introduce Arbor Day worldwide. He was the first to present it to Japan and introduce the Japanese to Arbor Day in 1883. In 1970, President Richard Nixon declared the last Friday in April to be Arbor Day.

Arbor Day was almost named Sylvan Day. Arbor Day was chosen because arbor represented forest and fruit trees (arbor means tree in Latin) while sylvan only described forest trees.

The National Arbor Day Foundation held a vote for America’s favorite tree in 2004. The mighty oak won by a landslide, earning 101,000 votes. America’s National Tree is now the oak. It is also Georgia’s state tree.

The date that a country or state celebrates its own Arbor Day can vary, depending on the planting season and climate.

That is why we celebrate our Arbor Day on the third Friday in February here in Georgia.

Trees and a healthy tree canopy in our community improve our quality of life. This Arbor Day, we will celebrate trees by providing a limited number of trees for planting. We aim to encourage as many local citizens as possible to help us grow our tree canopy.

We invite local residents, schools, businesses, churches, and civic and youth groups to select a free tree and plant it for Arbor Day!

(One fruit tree per household or group and up to 4 of the flowering trees!).

Our tree giveaway is only by reservation and starts today, February 1, 2023!

You have until February 11, 2023, or until all trees are reserved.

To reserve your tree go to www.signupgenius. com and search:, or you can use this link

Arbor Day Tree Pick-Up Days

Friday, February 17

• 9 a.m.–noon at Farmers Natural Foods, Hwy 196, 754 Elma G Miles Pkwy, Hinesville

• 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. at Melon Bluff Nature Center, 2999 Islands Hwy, Midway Saturday, February 18

• 9 a.m.–1 p.m. at the Recycle It! Fair Locations: a) Midway Community Complex, 9397 East Oglethorpe Hwy, Midway b) Walthourville City Hall, 222 Busbee Drive, Walthourville Help us expand our tree canopy in Liberty County by planting trees this Arbor Day! For more information contact us at (912) 880-4888 or email klcb@libertycountyga. com, or check out our website at www.keep

Think Trees!

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