Crocus and tulip bulbs are emerging, lilac buds are swelling, and the cotoneasters are leafing. It must be spring!
All of these signs lead to a very important week of the year and an opportunity for our community to gather and celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Day, or what I like to call Earth Week.
During this week and through the spring I encourage us all to take a stake in improving a very disappointing average and plant a tree.
In 2013 Butte-Silver Bow developed an Urban Forest Management Plan. This plan was made in collaboration with many foresters in the state and the Butte-Silver Bow Urban Forestry Board in order to guide efforts to maintain, establish, and add to our community forest.
In this guiding document, the benefits of trees are calculated in a number of ways. One way is by measuring the amount of shade or “canopy cover" the urban forest provides.
The Urban Forestry Management Plan states that Butte-Silver Bow's canopy cover is a dismal nine percent, 18 percent below what a community's canopy cover should be according to the national average.
To rise to this national average we all need to plant trees in our yards, boulevards, parks, and open spaces. This year MSU Extension Butte-Silver Bow and NCAT’s Energy Corps have partnered to raise awareness in a tree-planting event.
Join us at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 18, to plant 450 tree and shrub saplings south of the Alice Mine at the Walkerville Ball Field. The property sits on North Street (one block north of Daly Street) between Second and Clark streets. Bring a hand trowel or shovel, work gloves, some water, and a friend to plant a tree or ten.
Through this effort, we are sure to increase our canopy cover and have fun as a community to celebrate Earth Week!