Why you should be a tree hugger: Celebrating Arbor Day 2022
Updated: April 15th, 2022
Why you should be a tree hugger: Celebrating Arbor Day 2022.
This year, 29th April marks the 150th anniversary of National Arbor Day in the United States. A special day dedicated to trees and their role in nature.
Why is there a special day for trees? Arbor Day celebrates the fact that trees support all life on Earth. After all, they provide the air that we breathe! As you will see, this special day should not just be a celebration for nature lovers, but for everybody.
So what can you do on 29th April (besides hugging trees)? Let’s find out what National Arbor Day is all about and how you can get involved in the celebrations!
What is Arbor Day?
“Arbor” is Latin for Tree, and so Arbor Day literally means Tree Day. It’s a day in recognition of the fact that trees are essential to all life on Earth. They are the lungs of our planet, producing oxygen and helping fight climate change by scrubbing our atmosphere of harmful CO2, one of the major greenhouse gases.
Trees also provide essential food and water for many living creatures. They are the source of life-saving medical treatments, provide livelihoods for entire communities, and shelter some of the rarest animal species on Earth. No wonder, trees are worth celebrating!
Founded by J. Sterling Morton, the first American Arbor Day was celebrated in 1872, exactly 150 years ago. Since then, the last Friday in April has become the day in the year when people come together to show their appreciation for trees, often by actually planting a tree!
Fun fact: 150 years is a mere blink of an eye in tree terms. The oldest tree in the United States is the Methuselah, a Great Basin bristlecone pine. An incredible 4,853 years old, this venerable giant grows in the White Mountains of Inyo County in eastern California.
How to celebrate Arbor Day in 2022.
There are many great ways of celebrating Arbor Day: It provides a tree-tastic opportunity for family activities, trying out creative tree-saving hacks around your home and, of course, for planting trees!
Here are some tree-inspired ideas for things you can get involved in as part of this year’s Arbor Day celebrations.
1. Get out into the forest this Arbor Day.
Take the whole family on a forest walk. You can have fun trying to identify as many trees as you can! There are some neat tree ID apps you can get for your phone. How many species can you find? Which is the biggest tree you can hug? It’s also a fantastic opportunity to spot rare wildlife!
Did you know that immersing yourself in the sights and sounds of a forest is scientifically proven to relieve stress and boost your immune system? Trees purify and humidify the air and act as a natural barrier to noise so that even in the heart of a bustling city, a forest walk can work wonders when you need a break.
2. Try out some tree-saving hacks.
These handy green hacks save trees and money! Try using cloths made from recycled cotton for cleaning your kitchen instead of paper towels, and set the table with linen napkins instead of disposables – these steps can make a huge difference to paper waste and to your pocket.
Tree-saving hacks can be fun and truly useful. They don’t require any major lifestyle changes, and are a great opportunity to show your creativity! Did you know you can get unique greetings cards and wedding invitations made from tree-free, 100% renewable bamboo fiber?
Fun fact: Bamboo is not a tree, but actually a type of giant grass. Certain types of bamboo can grow up to 3 feet in the space of a day!
3. Celebrate Arbor Day by planting a tree.
Yes, it’s that simple! You can celebrate this Arbor Day by planting a beautiful new tree (or three) in your backyard. Just think of the fun you can have choosing which tree to plant and watching it grow. Trees provide an effective barrier to noise and light pollution. By selecting fast-growing species suited to your area, you can get the benefits in just a few years.
If you don’t have the opportunity to plant a tree yourself this year, you could still make a contribution by supporting a tree-planting initiative. There are a number of tree-planting organizations that work all around the world to reforest areas where trees make a vital difference to local communities and wildlife.
4. Share some tree-love this Arbor Day.
And you can also help to raise awareness of the importance of trees in our lives by sharing your favorite tree-saving hacks as well as fun photos of your Arbor Day activities with friends & family. You can even gift a tree to someone as part of a tree-planting project!
Arbor Day falls on the 29th of April this year. That doesn’t mean that this is the only day you can celebrate trees! You can engage in all of the above activities all year round (although you may want to check when the best time is to plant trees in your backyard). Let Arbor Day inspire you!
Fun fact: The calendar date for National Arbor Day – the last Friday of the month of April – was set by Richard Nixon in April 1972 to mark 100 years of Arbor Day celebrations.
Need more trees in your life? Why not change your desktop background to a beautiful picture of a tree that will cheer you up every time you see it? You can also include some fabulous tree-inspired books in your reading list and spend a relaxing evening watching a forest documentary on Netflix.
Trees are worth celebrating!
It can be said without a doubt that trees are nature’s superheroes: providing us with clean air, food and water, as well as a space to relax and just be ourselves. Arbor Day gives us the opportunity to share this gift with future generations.
What are you planning for this year’s Arbor Day?
Whether you are planting a tree yourself or dedicating trees to a loved one as part of a tree-planting project, Arbor Day is a great opportunity to remind ourselves of just how essential trees are to all life on this planet.
Story by Alexandra Ward.
About the author
Alexandra Ward is a nature lover, scuba instructor and writer of numerous articles on both of those subjects. She is fascinated by all creatures – above the surface and below – and the environment they interact with. Alexandra is a keen proponent of tree-saving hacks and very much looking forward to celebrating Arbor Day 2022!
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