Harford County held its annual tree planting in observance of Arbor Day Friday morning at the Fox Meadows Athletic Complex in Jarrettsville.
People of all ages, including families, Scouts, members of civic organizations and other volunteers, joined members of the Harford County Department of Planning and Zoning in planting 315 native trees.
This year marks Harford County's 14th annual Arbor Day celebration. County Executive Barry Glassman attended for an award presentation from the Arbor Day Foundation and to join in the planting. Volunteers received a free native tree, courtesy of the Forest Conservancy District Board of Harford County, an advocacy group that promotes stewardship, conservation and sustainable use of Maryland's forest resources.
The Arbor Day Foundation also bestowed its national Tree City USA Award on Harford County government. The award recognizes the work of elected officials, staff and citizens who plant and care for the community forest, which in turn benefits both the environment and the economy.
The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation organization of nearly one million members whose mission is to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees.
Since 2003, Harford County has planted nearly 32,000 trees in recognition of Arbor Day. Tree varieties native to the county include red maple, tulip poplar, white oak, black walnut, eastern red cedar and red bud.
Planting and conserving trees improves the quality of life by reducing air pollution, stabilizing soils and reducing water pollution by absorbing pollutants.
Trees also enhance property values, reduce noise and visual pollution and provide protection from the sun by reducing glare and reducing the heat island effect by shading buildings and parking lots. They also add beauty to the landscape.