Want to Plant a Tree in Your Neighborhood? Here’s How

Planting trees around your home and in your neighborhood is a great way to beautify your community. Here’s what you need to know about planting trees.

Planting trees is a great way to make your neighborhood healthier and more beautiful. A single mature tree can capture nearly 50 pounds of carbon from the air and supply enough oxygen to support one human for two years. Additionally, trees enrich soil, filter water, keep neighborhoods cool, and facilitate ecological diversity.

If you want to plant trees in your community, here’s how you can do so safely and effectively.

Check if your city has a tree-planting program.

Before you start, you’ll want to make sure you can plant trees in your community safely and legally. Make sure you have any tree planning permits and permission necessary to plant trees. You can check your city’s website to see what processes are required for planting trees.

Also, lots of cities have programs for community beautification. Check whether there are city-sponsored tree planting programs in your town by contacting your town’s public landscaping or urban forestry division.

Learn which tree species are native to your region.

While the intent behind planting trees is certainly positive, planting the wrong trees for your region’s ecosystem can damage it significantly. Invasive tree species can destroy ecosystems by sapping resources from native species, essentially compromising ecological diversity and threatening species of native flora and fauna.

Before you plant trees, research which tree species are native to your geographical location. You can certainly search online for appropriate tree species, but it’s a good idea to visit your local nursery to discuss appropriate trees for your neighborhood.

Plant trees in the dormant season.

It’s not a good idea to plant trees in the heat of the summer. The oppressive heat can weaken delicate saplings and inhibit their ability to take root and grow. Instead, plant trees in either the fall or the spring. This allows the saplings to comfortably establish their roots and grow foliage.

Be careful with soil amendments.

Amending the soil can inhibit root growth into the surrounding soil. While it is sometimes necessary to add compost to soils that have been depleted, very often it can lead to trees developing weaker and smaller root systems, which prevents them from reaching their full growth potential. This can lead to trees being more susceptible to disease and premature death.

Set up an irrigation system.

An irrigation system can give a new tree’s roots a slow and deep watering that allows the surrounding soil system to absorb moisture slowly without overwhelming the ground and resulting in the runoff.

Avoid adding fertilizer until the root system has been established.

Fertilizing too soon after planting can trigger flowering too early. In the beginning of the growth cycle, the tree’s energy should be directed towards root establishment. When the time is right to fertilize – generally two years after planting – use an organic, slow-release, non-burning fertilizer so that your new tree won’t be overly stressed.

Forest Founders is dedicated to helping communities plant trees for neighborhood beautification and for environmental benefits. To learn more about Forest Founders’ commitment to planting trees all over the world, please visit our information page.

To learn more about how you can get involved in local tree-planting initiatives, please visit our sign-up page.