This year marks the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. 20 million demonstrators participated in the first Earth Day. As you know I am a big advocate of starting family traditions – this is a perfect opportunity. As a family plant a tree, it doesn’t have to be big and expensive, start small and it will grow. Before planting your tree brainstorm with your family all the great benefits of planting a tree. Here are some ideas to get the ball rolling.
- Each tree you plant will provide oxygen for two people for the rest of their lives.
- ‘The planting of a tree is a gift you can make at almost no cost and trouble and it will far outlive the visible effect of any of your other actions, good or evil.’ So said Mr.1984, George Orwell.
- Most often we plant trees to provide shade and beautify our landscapes. These are great benefits but trees also provide other less obvious benefits.
- Trees make life nicer. It has been shown that spending time among trees and green spaces reduces the amount of stress that we carry around with us in our daily lives.
- Hospital patients have been shown to recover from surgery more quickly when their hospital room offered a view of trees.
- Even though you may own the trees on your property your neighbors may benefit from them as well.
- Through careful planning trees can be an asset to your entire community.
- Tree lined streets have a traffic calming effect, traffic moves more slowly and safely.
- Trees offer many environmental benefits.
- Trees give off oxygen that we need to breathe.
- Trees helps clean our air.
I promise that your children will continue to talk about your family tree long after you’ve finished planting.
Local Earth Day activities:
Join TAP in celebration at Art City Austin on Saturday from 11am-5pm and make a tile for The Neighborhood Project and/or at The Paramount to make recycled instruments before and after the Biscuit Brothers performances at 2pm and 4:30pm.
More events here: http://www.austinearthday.com/
More information on how to help the environment for kids: http://www.epa.gov/kids/
Julie Flores (Parent/Teacher/Child Advocate/TAP volunteer)