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K-State Today

April 26, 2016

Tree Campus USA and Arbor Day activities

Submitted by Cathie Lavis

In Kansas, Arbor Day is celebrated the last Friday in April, so this week is an appropriate time to promote our campus trees. Thanks to a 2016 Green Action Fund Grant: Promoting and Recognizing the Value of Our Campus Trees, arboriculture students will plant six trees and highlight 18 trees with permanent, colored signs. Each sign includes educational information and interesting facts about each tree. Walk through campus and enjoy these signs posted in various locations.

Students in HORT 585: Arboriculture will offer various educational activities April 27-29:

  • A table in the Waters Hall Quad will display various tree specimens, stop by and learn more about trees. In addition, arboriculture students will demonstrate the use of a rope and climbing harness system; this system is used to prune trees either in combination with or without an aerial lift truck. Climbing also allows the arborist to get into the tree to prune from inside out while a bucket truck works from the outside in, many long-practicing arborist believe this is the ideal method to prune mature trees.
  • Students will demonstrate proper tree planting at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Wednesday, April 27, along Claflin Road across from Umberger Hall and Dykstra Hall; and 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Thursday, April 28, in the Waters Hall Quad area.
  • Arboriculture students will visit Marlatt Elementary to share intriguing tree facts on Friday, April 29. The idea is to inspire young people to learn about the many benefits of trees while stimulating interest in tree planting and care.
  • The grand finale will include planting a sugar hackberry tree at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, April 29, at the president's north lawn. This tree will be planted by the arboriculture students and was specifically selected to replace a historic sugar hackberry that was recently removed due potential failure.

Kansas State University has been a recognized Tree Campus USA since 2013. Tree Campus USA is a national program sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation honoring college campuses for endorsing appropriate tree care practices while promoting the numerous benefits of trees to a sustainable world.

To obtain and maintain this distinction, K-State must meet the required five core standards for sustainable campus forestry; including a tree advisory committee with student representation, evidence of a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for campus trees, an Arbor Day observance event and the sponsorship of student service-learning projects.

Student involvement has been the driving force for the increased awareness, appreciation and promotion of our trees. Lack of understanding often causes misunderstanding, and arboricultural students want to educate the campus community of the many benefits of trees. Once people realize the various benefits of trees and the importance of tree-planting programs, we believe, they will want to preserve them.

For more information, contact Cathie Lavis, chair of the Kansas State Tree Campus USA, at clavis@k-state.edu or 785-532-1433, or visit the Students for KSU Trees' Facebook page and Twitter account at @KSU Trees.

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