Monday, January 21, 2008

Arbor Day in The Woodlands 2008

This year, the event was in Stirling Ridge Shopping Center. There were nine varieties of trees given to each individual who was willing to stand in line and wait for them. There were festivities to encourage participation by youth and the usual booths by various associations, nature groups, Stirling Ridge Village, Brickman Group (contracted to care for our green spaces) and of course the development company. Each year I participate in this and have trees in my yard and green space behind my house to show for it.

All of the seedliongs were planted immediately this year because if you wait, some of them will become dehydrated and weak. The seedlings are generally easy to plant. We add humus to the natural soil to improve water retention and porosity of the soil, to encourage growth and help survival in the summer months. It takes two years of care after planting to keep the death rate down. Still even with moderate care, I lose about 50% of all seedlings I plant. I even automatically water the green area to encourage reforestation. That keeps the soil moist enough in the summer months to prevent death of the more hardy seedlings.

24 Bald Cypress trees were planted this year along a nearby pond and 24 Loblolly pines behind my home. I hope the two Redbuds survive this year. They did not survive last year. For these beautiful East Texas trees, one needs to slice the root ball to prevent balling constraints and encourage new root growth.

No Willow Oaks this year because I have a beautiful one in the back and they grow huge. I did not plant any White Oaks because they are also big trees and besides, I have several of them. No Chinquapin Oaks this year. I have one about 12 feet tall that I planted in a prior Arbor Day planting. It is prone to webworms, so I am not encouraging anyone to plant them. I did plant a Magnolia and two Pecan trees in the green area.

Arbor Day here means a great deal to our community and is a great family event for children to learn the value of planting trees and be able to watch their planting grow over the years. There is nothing like having a five- or six-year-old child be able to plant a tree and see it grow to maturity. A stake beside it to commemorate the day would be beneficial also.

Many thanks to the sponsors of this year's Arbor Day! The Garden Club volunteers had good suggestions and were willing to help anyone who asked for information as one passed through the distribution line.

Announcement of Arbor Day

I can't believe it is already here again! The event this year will be hosted at Sterling Ridge Shopping Center on Woodlands Parkway at Kuykendahl from 10AM to 2PM. This is the opportunity for every resident here in The Woodlands to add to the forest. Just go get your seedlings and plant them within a few days afterwards. It is not difficult to plant them and you can watch them grow. I have one pine in my yard that I planted 8 years ago and now it is towering above the house. I also planted numerous other trees and have watched them grow over the years. This year will be no different. I will plant in green areas near my home. Be sure you plant your trees in a place where they will not threaten the house or fence in years to come. Keep them 2+ feet away from the fence. Remember that the trunk grows out as well as up. I would not plant a tree closer than 8 feet away from the house, but some people like to have some trees close. Remember that the limbs of some species will reach over your house, such as a White Oak. They provide good shade to reduce electricity costs.

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