Arbor Day Activities

Hello everyone!  In honor of Arbor Day tomorrow, I would like to share a few activities that you can do at home with your kids that will encourage a love of trees and nature that will last a lifetime.  Not only will they be developing strong, earth-friendly habits young, but you will have a ton of fun together as well.

This rustic twig frame is a simple and quick project that even very young children can do.  All you need is a few twigs, some string or twine, glue (hot glue works well), and a photo for framing.

Collect 2 bunches of twigs.  One bunch (about 6 to 8 twigs) should be approximately 2 inches longer than your photograph. The other bunch of twigs should be about 2 inches wider than your photo.

Arrange the twigs so that they surround the photo and extend outward about an inch in each direction.  Tie the twigs at each corner using the string or twine, making an X pattern.

glue the photo onto the back of your twig frame.  Hot glue works the best, but be careful of young children and hot glue.

Glue a small loop of string to the top batch of twigs for hanging the photo.


This string of leaves are a great way to decorate a room.  You can string these across a window or along a mantel or around a chandelier for a great holiday decoration.  Here’s what you’ll need to get started.

  1. Construction paper (any natural colors)
  2. Crayons or markers
  3. Scissors
  4. Glue, tape or staples
  5. A long piece of yarn or string

Draw a leaf on construction paper.  Make sure to draw a stick stem on the top.  Your leaf will hang from this stem, which will be folded over.  You can freehand your leaves, trace a real leaf from outside, or download a leaf template.

Cut out the leaf and fold the stem in half.  You can draw on leaf veins if you wish.

Attach the leaf to the long string using tape, glue, or staples.  Draw more leaves and repeat the process.

I hope these give you some great ideas for adding a few Arbor Day celebrations to your house.  And remember, the best Arbor Day project of all is to plant a new tree in your garden.  We have so many beautiful options to choose from, and as always, our experts are on hand to assist you with selecting the perfect tree for your yard.

Thanks for stopping by!  I’ll see you back here tomorrow for more snippets from the garden.

Arbor Day 2010

Hi everyone!  With Arbor Day just two short days away, now is the perfect time to consider planting a new tree in your home landscape.  We have a wide range of beautiful trees to chose from down at Garden Supply.  By planting a tree, you will not only be enhancing your own yard, but you will also be helping the environment.  Did you know that trees remove pollutants and dust from the air?  Trees also provide natural insulation- enough to cut your heating and cooling bills by up to 30%.  Come talk to our experts about choosing the perfect tree for your garden, and celebrate Arbor Day with us!

Here’s a little fun history on Arbor Day.  The first Arbor Day took place on April 10, 1872 in Nebraska.  It was the idea of Julius Morton, a Nebraska journalist and politician.  Throughout his long career, Morton worked to improve agricultural techniques and served as President Cleveland’s Secretary of Agriculture.  But his most important legacy is Arbor Day.

Morton felt that Nebraska’s landscape and economy would benefit from the wide-scale planting of trees.  He set an example himself by planting orchards, shade trees and wind breaks on his own farm, and he urged his neighbors to do the same.  As a member of Nebraska’s state board of agriculture, he proposed that a special day be set aside dedicated to tree planting and increasing awareness of the importance of trees. For Nebraska’s first Arbor day, more than one million trees were planted.  A second Arbor Day took place in 1884 and the young state made it an annual legal holiday in 1885.

In the years following that first Arbor Day, Morton’s idea spread beyond Nebraska with Kansas, Tennessee, Minnesota and Ohio all proclaiming their own Arbor Days. Today, all 50 states celebrate Arbor Day. Arbor Day is also now recognized in other countries, with variations being celebrated in Australia, Japan, Israel, Korea, Yugoslavia, Iceland, and India.  Sometimes one good idea can make a real difference.  For more information about this holiday, please visit the Arbor Day Foundation.

Over the next few days, I’ll share a few simple Arbor Day crafts and activities you can do with your kids at home that will foster a love of trees that will last a lifetime.

This fun pine-cone bird feeder is a snap to make and would be perfect to hang in your newly- planted commemorative Arbor Day tree. Here’s what you’ll need to get started.

  • A large, open pine cone
  • Vegetable shortening, lard, or suet
  • Oats or corn meal
  • Bird seed
  • String

Simply tie a few feet of string to the pine cone and then cover the cone with the food mixture below. Roll the pine cone in birdseed and then hang it from a tree branch outside.

Food Mixture:

Mix 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, lard or suet with 21/2 cups cornmeal or uncooked oats until well blended. Optional: add chopped dried fruit, chopped nuts, seeds like sunflower or millet, and/or suet which are high energy bird foods.

Thanks for stopping by everyone!  I’ll see you back here tomorrow for more great Arbor Day ideas.

Blooming Trees for Mid April

Hi everyone!  Looking to add some spring-flowering trees to your landscape and wondering what might be blooming in our area right now? This week?  Today?  Here are a few outstanding choices available for mid April blooming that reach their peek of beauty just as the Redbuds begin to fade and well after the Bradford pears have lost their luster. We’ve got them all down at Garden Supply.

The first option, that I’m sure you’ve noticed while driving down almost any semi-wooded street in town, is the glorious Dogwood tree (Cornus genus).

  • Beautiful white spring-time blossoms
  • Adaptable to various soil types
  • Drought tolerant

The Dogwood tree boasts a profusion of full white blooms every spring. Deep green leaves turn scarlet in fall, making your dogwood a beautiful sight in all seasons.

This breathtakingly beautiful blizzard of white blossoms is an excellent choice to plant along streets, near large buildings, next to patios or as a property border. An especially eye-catching tree when planted in rows.

This tree rewards all through the year!

Beloved blooms welcome spring from Massachusetts to Florida… from east to west
Stunning scarlet leaves add to the color show in the fall
Red berries appear in the fall and winter attracting songbirds – up to thirty-six species are known to be attracted to the dogwood’s fruit

Matures at 15-30 feet…grows in partial shade or full sun. Grows in most soils including acidic, loamy, rich, sandy or even clay.

Did you know?

– The White Dogwood is a native tree cultivated in 1731.
– George Washington planted it at Mt. Vernon, as did Thomas Jefferson at Monticello.
– Early Native Americans made medicinal teas from its bark

You’ll want to consider making this all-American tree part of your own landscape.

Another fabulous choice for mid April blooming is the Yoshino Flowering Cherry tree, a rapid-growing vase-like deciduous broadleaf tree.

• Stunning white blossoms
• Adaptable to various soil types
• Drought resistant

The Yoshino Flowering Cherry Tree is widely used as an ornamental tree; valued for its abundance of soft, white flowers in spring.

Its Oriental branching pattern displays a pure white cloud of delicate flowers that make your landscape look like springtime on parade…

Chose this tree to –

• Border driveways
• Accent small areas in your lawn.
• Highlight outdoor living areas

These trees line the streets of Washington, DC, and along with its cousin, the Kwanzan Cherry, are the stars of the city’s Cherry Blossom Festival. Held each spring, this festival displays thousands of blooming cherry trees along the city’s walkways.

When you plant this tree, you get the same effect at your home!

Plant in a row to give you a line of breathtakingly stunning white flowers. This tree is regarded by many horticulturalist as the best flowering tree you can find.

Did you know?

– The Yoshino is a native of Japan,
– Was introduced to America in 1902.
– There is a Japanese legend that each spring a fairy maiden hovers low in the warm sky, wakening the sleeping Cherry Trees to life with her delicate breath.

Another fabulous April-blooming cherry tree is the Kwanzan cherry.

• Hardiest of all cherry trees
• Rapidly grows to a mature height of 30-40 ft.

The Kwanzan Flowering Cherry Tree is easily the showiest of all Cherry Trees. Its flowers aren’t just pink… but “Double Pink,” meaning you get twice as many blooms as found on other trees.

Your new Kwanzan Cherry Tree blooms in large clusters of 3-5 flowers! These clusters are the thickest of all pink flowering trees and look similar to carnations.

Your Kwanzans will begin to bloom in April. Also a delight in the fall, when it will give you golden autumn leaves that grab everyone’s attention.

One of the easiest flowering trees to grow! Thrives in almost any soil and climate. Easily grown in zones 5-9. A tree for many seasons!

Stop by the garden center to find  these lovely trees in full bloom, ready to lighten and brighten your gardens this season.  Talk to our experts about the best tree planting guidelines for these species, and pick up our handy planting guide, available in the Greenhouse.  We have everything you need to ensure your new trees get off to a great start and get your yards looking in tip-top shape this season.

Thanks so much for stopping by!  I’ll see you back here soon for more snippets from the garden.