Fresno Celebrates “Tree City USA” Award with Local Arbor Day Planting
04/27/2009

Students from Manchester Gate Elementary School helped the City of Fresno expand its urban forest on Friday morning by planting four trees near their campus. The Arbor Day planting was accompanied by the posting of new signs in the community heralding Fresno’s recent designation as a “Tree City USA.”

Fresno City Council member Blong Xiong was on hand to assist as the students positioned the trees, filled and packed the surrounding soil, and watered them thoroughly. “It’s wonderful to see the next generation already making contributions like this to the betterment of our community,” Xiong said. “As they watch these trees grow in the years ahead, I’m sure the young people who are with us here today will be proud of what they see.”

Over the past year, the City of Fresno planted more than 275 trees in locations throughout the city. This effort included a major project in November which resulted in the planting of more than 90 trees in the downtown area alone. That project was completed in partnership with the Downtown Association, Tree Fresno, and West Coast Arborists.

Tree City USA designations are awarded to cities which meet standards established by The Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters. The award demonstrates a city’s commitment to the environment and to the benefits of a healthy urban forest including cleaner air, shadier streets, civic pride, and an improved quality of life for residents.

“Fresno is a ‘Tree City USA’ because citizens, businesses, and government have all worked together to make sure our community forest is well cared for,” said Mayor Ashley Swearengin. Mayor Swearengin commended the City of Fresno Public Works Department for its critical role in caring for approximately 20,000 trees in public areas across the community. “This award would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the people in our Public Works department and Street Maintenance division,” she said.

Mayor Swearengin also thanked West Coast Arborists for the company’s generous donation of trees for Friday’s planting.

For additional information regarding Fresno’s urban forest, contact Jamie Hodge – City of Fresno Forestry Supervisor – at 621-1492.