Plant a tree.
“The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
We’ll tell you why trees are super important for the environment. We’ll also take a closer look at the actual process of planting a tree. It will help you choose the right type of tree and the appropriate equipment which you’ll need to properly plant a tree.
The importance of trees
Most of us live in the cities nowadays and are somewhat distanced from nature, however, that doesn’t mean we don’t need it.
You all probably remember some of your first nature classes where you were taught about the importance of trees. Let’s repeat why trees are super important for us humans and all other living things on this planet.
Trees are the biggest plants in the world and as such, they are the main oxygen providers and carbon sinks. Using the sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide from the atmosphere they produce oxygen via the process known as photosynthesis.
“The simplest carbon dioxide removal approach is to plant a tree.”
Moreover, trees stabilize the soil and give life to many wild animals by providing food and shelter. We’ve also been using wood as one of the heating means, as a material for creating many different tools, furniture and even to build entire houses.
We can easily say that the world without trees is unimaginable.
There are fewer and fewer trees
Due to industrialization, human population growth, agriculture (meat industry), urbanization, and other factors, the size of the surface covered with trees has been dropping regularly. We even came up with a word for it – deforestation.
When we take into account gains and losses, the total loss in forest area between 1990 and 2000 was 89,000 square km per year and 73,000 square km per year between 2000 and 2005. That is 200 square kilometers per day.
In order to save the environment, we have to do all that’s in our power to put an end to deforestation. We can all start by planting a tree ourselves.
Why plant a tree?
In case we haven’t convinced you yet, here is a list of some reasons why you should plant a tree:
- trees help prevent soil erosion,
- trees help prevent water pollution,
- trees cool the streets and the city,
- trees clean the air,
- trees combat the greenhouse effect,
- trees provide oxygen,
- trees shield us from UV rays,
- trees provide food,
- trees mark the seasons,
- trees provide a canopy and habitat for wildlife,
- trees provide wood,
- trees increase property values.
“He that plants trees loves others besides himself.”
Read the instructions below and go plant a tree!
How to plant a tree?
Planting a tree seems pretty straightforward: you dig a hole, put in the baby tree, fill the hole with soil and that’s it. It basically is that simple, however, to drastically improve the chances of healthy growth and survival rate of your tree, more detailed instructions and some caution notes are in order.
Plan ahead the following:
1.) Choosing the right kind of a tree. You must consider your wishes (what type of tree you want, what are your plans for it, etc.), local weather, and other local conditions (e.g.: type of soil, land slope, neighbors, drainage, …).
2.) Make sure you check local laws for digging holes and planting trees. Some communities have certain laws that you have to consider (in the US you can call 811 before digging to obtain additional information).
If you don’t have your own land check with local officials if there is a place where you can plant a tree.
3.) Choose the right time of year for planting a tree. This can vary according to the type of the tree and local climate. In areas with a four-season climate, the best time to plant the tree is in autumn or in spring for most of the tree types.
4.) Prepare the right kind of tools. You can’t plant a tree without digging a hole, so a shovel is a must-have tool (you can order a good one here). We also recommend using a pair of work gloves to prevent getting blisters and dirt underneath your nails.
5.) Buy a tree. You can buy trees in most of the local gardening shops, you can also order trees online. Make sure to ask if there are any detailed instructions regarding planting the type of tree you’re buying.
The actual planting process:
1.) Dig a hole. Physically speaking, this part is the most difficult one of the tree planting process. As the rule of thumb, the hole must be about 2-3 times the size of the root ball in all three dimensions. This will make the soil around the tree softer, hence it will be easier for the roots to grow.
2.) Take the baby tree out of the container/plastic wrap and place it in the center of the whole. Make sure you create some kind of a pedestal (a small pile of dirt) in the center of the whole and place the tree on top of it.
3.) Make sure your tree is straight. Ask someone else to look at the tree from the distance from different directions to ensure your tree is straight.
4.) If possible use high-quality soil to cover first few inches around the root ball.
5.) Place some organic fertilizer around the root ball. Make sure there is no direct contact between the fertilizer and the roots since the fertilizer can burn the roots (we protect the roots by covering them with a few inches of soil first).
6.) Place a wooden pole next to the tree if your tree is not firm yet. This will ensure the support your tree might need to stay straight.
7.) Fill the hole with the soil. Do it gently, especially around the roots. Every few layers you can step on the soil to make it a bit firmer but don’t overdo it.
8.) Water the soil around the tree. Most of the trees need a lot of water, make sure to ask about the approximate quantity when you’re buying the tree.
That’s all you need. Planting a tree can be a great experience. Watching the tree grow and get bigger and bigger is kind of amazing. We challenge you to plant a tree if possible do it this week.
trees are awesome – they use CO2 to produce O2;
we need to stop deforestation now;
plant a tree.
“When we plant a tree, we plant the seeds of peace and seeds of hope.”
Have a great week full of fresh air.