Apr 28, 200603:27 PMThe Life
Arbor Day: go plant a tree!
Apr 28, 2006 - 03:27 PMToday is National Arbor Day, even though a number of state Arbor Days have been set at other times to coincide with the best tree planting weather. [Click thumbnail photo to enlarge.] You may be asking yourself: "But what are the origins of Arbor Day?" Never fear, that's why I'm here... to answer your question:
Nebraska was once a treeless plain. But J. Sterling Morton set out to change all that. He figured that trees were needed as windbreaks to keep the soil in place, for fuel and building materials, and for shade from the hot sun. In early 1872, Morton proposed a tree-planting holiday, to be held on April 10, 1872. Prizes were offered to counties and individuals for planting the largest number of trees.
It was estimated that more than 1,000,000 trees were planted in Nebraska on that first Arbor Day.
In 1885, Arbor Day was named a legal holiday in Nebraska and April 22, Morton's birthday, was selected as the date for its observance.
Related: The Story of Johnny Appleseed.