Joseph MacKenzie, Levy County Forester and Barbara L. Edmonds, Horticulture PA, UF/IFAS Extension Levy County collaborated with Jennifer Bray, Assistant Principal, Bronson Middle-High School during an Arbor Day 2022 program.
Addressing faculty and students, MacKenzie explained that many holidays bring awareness to past events of historical significance. “Arbor Day, however, is a unique event focusing on the future. Not only are you planting a tree today, but you’re also planting clean air, clean water, habitat for wildlife, and a host of products that come from trees. You’re also planting a memory today. Twenty years from now some of you will stand in this spot and marvel at a towering tree that you will remember planting today as little more than a twig” stated MacKenzie.
Planting the right trees, in the right place, benefits future generations. “Quercus shumardii, (Shumard oak) is known for showy fall display, urban adaptability, drought tolerance and benefits to wildlife” affirmed Edmonds, continuing “consistent irrigation is a key factor in tree establishment.” Evelyn, one of forty students participating, recited irrigation recommendation, based on UF research (Gilman and Sadowski, 2017). SRWMD supplied rain gauges to Ty Barber and Kelby Barber, AG Ed teachers, Bronson Middle and High School, respectively.
The Florida Forest Service, a division of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, is responsible for protecting homes, forestland and natural resources from the devastating effects of wildfire on more than 26 million acres. Learn more at FDACS.gov/FLForestService.
Until next time – Happy Gardening!
Gilman, E. and Sadowski, L., 2017, Planting and establishing trees, table 2. https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdf%5CEP%5CEP31400.pdf