Woodland Tree Foundation and City of Woodland Plant 1,200 Shade Trees to Complete the State Cal Fire Grant Program
Thank you to all the volunteers who contributed to the successful completion of planting 1,200 trees during the last three years as part of the State Cal Fire grant for Woodland’s community forest.
During 2017-2020 over 600 volunteers from local schools, businesses, Kiwanis Key Club, Lions Club student leaders, Rotary Club, UC Davis students, and the community-at-large provided 2,100 hours of service to plant the 1,200 trees.
Volunteers from throughout Woodland and UC Davis students planted at parks, schools, farmworker housing complexes, public housing neighborhoods, at retirement communities, at the fairgrounds, along city streets, and at hundreds of private residences. Any homeowner or renter in the city could request free trees for their yard. And, in the deal of the century, volunteers, working under the guidance of WTF team leaders, planted, staked, mulched and watered the trees for each homeowner. As these trees grow, air conditioners won’t click on quite as often.
We planted in warm October sunshine in hard sun-baked soils, through winter dormancy when the saplings were leafless and storing energy for their spring awakening, and on glorious rainy and soggy mornings in early spring with buds swelling on tender branches. Steadily, new trees popped up all over town as headway was made on the 1,200 tree challenge.
In all, 35 different types of trees were planted, including nine different types of oaks. Valley oaks were planted in the new Spring Lake and Rick Gonzalez Sr. parks where they have ample room. Red oaks (Quercus rubra), an eastern variety adaptable to our climate and a variety of soils, were planted in abundance. Holly oak (Quercus ilex) was also a popular choice. The wide range of trees that were planted under the CF grant reflect the city’s strategy of growing a diverse community forest, which helps manage pests that might attack certain trees in one year but not spread like a contagion reaping havoc over a mono-culture of trees.
Over their projected forty-year lifespan these 1,200 trees will absorb 4,531 metric tons of C02, which is the equivalent of taking almost 1,000 gasoline-fueled cars off the road for one full year.
Moreover, as the young trees grow they will also contribute considerably to the City’s Climate Action Plan goal of 25% shade coverage by 2035. At the end of the three-year program, a follow-up visual survey of the trees planted showed at 97% survival rate, a strong indicator that the trees will mature and provide the intended cost-effective environmental services to the community.
A job well done by all those who participated!