‘Tis the Season!

Yes, it’s the season for holidays, but, also, it’s the season to recertify your City or fill out the application and apply to become a TCUSA GREEN LOGOTree City USA. The Tree City USA® Program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the USDA Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters. It provides direction, technical assistance, public attention, and national recognition for urban and community forestry programs in thousands of towns and cities that more than 135 million Americans call home.

Why should your community become a Tree City USA? Here are 15 great reasons:

Becoming a Tree City:*

  1. Encourages better care of community forests.
  2. Touches the lives of people within the community who benefit daily from cleaner air, shadier streets, and aesthetic beauty that healthy, well-managed urban forests provide.
  3. Recognizes and rewards communities for annual advancements in urban forestry practices.
  4. Increases public awareness of the many social, economical and environmental benefits urban forestry practices.
  5. Provides education to improve current urban forestry practices.
  6. Builds cooperation between public and private sectors to effectively manage urban forests.
  7. Encourages, supports, and strengthens effective urban forestry programs in diverse communities nationwide.
  8. Can make a strong contribution to a community’s pride.
  9. Serves as a blueprint for planting and maintaining a community’s trees.
  10. Puts people in touch with other communities and resources that can help them improve their program.
  11. Brings solid benefits to a community such as helping to gain financial support for tree projects and contributing to safer and healthier urban forests.
  12. Helps present the kind of image that most citizens want to have for the place they live or conduct business.
  13. Tells visitors, through signage, that here is a community that cares about its environment.
  14. Sometimes gives preference over other communities when allocations of grant money are made for trees or forestry programs.
  15. Provides a way to reach large numbers of people with information about tree care.

*from Arbor Day Foundation Tree City USA webpage

So you see, when a community becomes a Tree City USA (TCUSA), it means much more than being able to display a road sign or fly a flag. TCUSA is a foundation for effective, well-organized tree care programs.

Eighty-three Washington communities, large and small, were tree cities in 2011. Is your community interested in becoming a Tree City USA? UCF provides technical assistance to help cities and towns achieve the goal of becoming a Tree City USA. If your community is interested, please feel free to contact us at urban_forestry@dnr.wa.gov or 800-523-8733.

Walla Walla's Pioneer Park - 1910
Walla Walla’s Pioneer Park – 1910
Walla Walla, a Tree City USA for
Walla Walla’s Pioneer Park – today