No, it is not Arbor Day yet, but your trees had a tough winter too. They need proper care and nutrients to thrive and survive. Trees are homes for birds and small animals, a place to build your fort and hang your hammock. They also produce Summer shade, winter warmth, and shield the wind, all welcomed by you AND all ways that can help reduce our energy consumption too. Big, small, flowering or not trees are essential to a healthy, sustainable environment.

Breathe easier because of trees.

Air pollution (from carbon monoxide, particulate matter, hydrocarbons, nitrogen and sulfur dioxide, etc.) can cause or aggravate some health issues. Trees remove pollution from our environment. Trees, especially mature species, can reduce particulate matter and other forms of air pollution. In the United States, trees remove 822,000 metric tons of pollution per year. The more trees we plant the more pollution they can absorb.

How can trees reduce water pollution?

Trees are natural water filters. They can slow down water flow and absorb waterborne toxins and then neutralize, metabolize, or vaporize it. The tree root systems can collect contaminants as water seeps through the soil, reducing the negative impacts of the polluted sediments. Some trees can even take in contaminants and store them, without harming the tree.

Trees reduce flooding and stormwater run-off.

During heavy rainstorms, the roots of trees soak up and filter stormwater. Trees also collect raindrops on their leaves, where the water can evaporate. The volume of water that enters storm sewers is greatly reduced and lessens the risk of flooding and the amount of sewage-polluted stormwater that cities must treat. The US Forest Service estimates that 100 mature trees intercept about 250,000 gallons of rainfall per year in their leafy crowns.

Trees impact climate change.

Trees battle climate change by helping to remove carbon dioxide from the air as well as releasing more oxygen into the atmosphere.

Trees and conservation.

Trees planted in wetland areas can prevent erosion and even contribute to cleaner water and flood control.

We are guessing you will now look at trees differently…at least we hope you do. Trees do so much to improve our lives and protect our environment. They deserve as much attention as your lawn and flower gardens, don’t you think?