The public is invited to the Trick or Tree free tree distribution at 9 a.m., Saturday, October 24 in the parking lot of Star City Shores, 4375 S. 33rd Court. The Arbor Day Foundation Lincoln Community Tree Recovery program replaces trees that have been damaged and destroyed by storms and the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB). The event is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation, Peter Kiewit Foundation, FedEx, Lincoln Parks and Recreation, and the Community Forestry Advisory Board.
"We appreciate the opportunity to partner with the Arbor Day Foundation and Fed Ex to make these trees available to the community," said Parks and Recreation Director Lynn Johnson. "A healthy, multi-age and diverse urban tree canopy provides many benefits to Lincoln now and in the future. We hope that Lincoln and Lancaster County residents will take advantage of this opportunity to receive free shade trees to plant in their yards."
Supply is limited to 250 trees distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis. Residents are allowed up to two trees. Due to the pandemic, residents must remain in their cars while volunteers load trees into their vehicles. Species include American Sycamore, Bur Oak, Kentucky coffeetree, Northern Catalpa, and Red Oak. Trees are distributed in three gallon containers and include planting and care instructions.
"The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted more than ever the important role that trees and green space play in our daily lives," said Dan Lambe, Arbor Day Foundation President. "By replacing trees damaged by the Emerald Ash Borer, we can help to ensure that Lincoln community members will continue to enjoy the benefits that many trees provide, from cleaning our air and water to bolstering our mental health."
Johnson said that the EAB was first discovered in Lincoln in August 2018. Part of Lincoln's EAB Response and Recovery Plan is to remove 1,000 public Ash trees. Prior to removals, the City had about 14,000 public Ash trees along streets and in parks and golf courses. A diverse mix of trees will be planted to replace the public ash trees. Residents may apply for the Adopt an Ash tree program, which uses a chemical injection treatment instead of removal. For more information on the EAB response plan and Adopt an Ash tree program, visit trees.lincoln.ne.gov.
The Arbor Day Foundation's Community Tree Recovery is underwritten by the Peter Kiewit Foundation, FedEx and Foundation members. The program has held more than 775 events, distributing more than 5 million trees since 2012. To donate to the recovery efforts supported by this campaign and others across the country, visit arborday.org/recovery.
For more information about the free tree distribution and the Community Forestry Division, visit trees.lincoln.ne.gov.