WMU to join Michiganders in celebrating 2014 Arbor Day

Contact: Jeanne Baron
Photo of an oak tree.

This year, landscape services staff will plant a scarlet oak tree.

KALAMAZOO—Western Michigan University will observe national Arbor Day during a public tree planting ceremony at 10 a.m. Friday, April 25.

The event will be held at the Zhang Legacy Collections Center, which is located at 1650 Oakland Drive, just north of the intersection of Howard Street and Oakland Drive on the grounds of the former Kalamazoo State Hospital.

WMU landscape services staff will be planting a scarlet oak (Quercus coccinea), and those attending the ceremony are welcome to add a shovel of soil to the planting.

Program to include update on state champion trees

The event will include a short program. Attendees will hear details about the scarlet oak and the University's Arbor Day history. They also will be updated on activities related to the rare dwarf hackberry trees recently confirmed on campus. One of those trees is the biggest dwarf hackberry known to exist in the state and has been officially named the Michigan State Champion.

In addition, WMU will celebrate being certified for the sixth consecutive by the Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree Campus for 2013, in recognition of its commitment to effective community forestry management.

The University conducts its annual tree planting ceremony prior to spring final examinations week to increase student participation. This year, organizers were able to schedule the event to coincide with Michigan's official observance of Arbor Day—the last Friday in April.

For more information, contact Darrell Junkins, WMU grounds supervisor in landscape services, at darrell.junkins@wmich.edu or (269) 387-8557.