Make friends with a tree on National Tree Day!
This blog was written by guest blogger Jaime Clifton-Ross.
One of the first things kids learn to draw are trees. Do you remember that classic green shape, resembling a broccoli crown, set atop a thick red-brown trunk? This iconic image was the reason we coloured through our green and brown crayons long before any others. But why do kids love drawing trees? What makes people connect with them at such a young age? Perhaps because they play such a prominent role in our daily lives as Canadians.
It’s hard to think of Canada without considering the impact that trees have had on our country, both ecologically and culturally. You can’t walk down the street without encountering some type of tree, whether it’s a Douglas fir, a sitka spruce, or even a Cedar Tree. Much of our natural landscape is covered with dense forests, some even home to old growth trees that have stood for over 1,000 years. We honour our cultural connection to trees through the beloved maple leaf emblem, since one of our most famous commodities drips from the icy trunks of Maple Trees.
To celebrate trees, the House of Commons passed a private members motion on March 2, 2011 declaring the Wednesday of National Forest Week as National Tree Day. At the insistence of Tree Canada, this special day was created to give Canadians the opportunity to learn more about the great benefits of trees while encouraging them to celebrate our country’s forest heritage. Communities across the country are invited to explore nature, enjoy its beauty, and also help nourish it by planting new trees.
So in words of famous painter, Bob Ross, I encourage you to “talk to a tree, make friends with it”.
Did you know that trees provide many benefits? Here are just a few:
- They make our air more breathable by absorbing carbon dioxide emissions and subsequently producing oxygen;
- They reduce energy consumption through cooling and insulation;
- They provide vital habitat, shelter, and food for animals;
- They play muse to our greatest artists; and
- They provide many health benefits including stress reduction.
Visit National Tree Day’s official website to find out how you can take part in celebrations taking place across the country! As well, if you are in the Ottawa area, Nature Canada will have a booth at the Healthy Trees—Healthy City Event! Click here for more information.