Winona State University will partner with local organizations to celebrate Earth Day/Arbor Day throughout the month of April.

WSU’s fifth annual Arbor Day Celebration will kick off April 19 with a free tree give-away and a campus presentation by horticulturist and author, Heather Holm.

Holm will present “Selecting Native Trees and Shrubs That Support Pollinators” from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 19, Science Lab Center, room 120. She will also be available before and after the presentation to sign copies of her latest work, “Bees: An Identification and Native Plant Forage Guide.”

This event is free and open to the public.

The presentation is sponsored by the Landscape Arboretum at WSU and the WSU Foundation.

WSU will partner with the City of Winona and participate in the 2017 combined Earth Day/Arbor Day celebration from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 22, at the East End Recreation Center.

The event will feature tree planting, tree giveaways, food and craft vendors, original poetry, advice on gardening and tree selection to support pollinators, displays and activities for children and adults.

The event is free and open to the public.

WSU’s Landscape Arboretum will partner with local schools to celebrate Arbor Day from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday, April 28.

The campus will partner with local schools for hands-on learning about trees and their benefits to the community environment. In the morning, about 30 second and third graders from Ridgeway and about 60 second graders from Goodview Elementary will learn to plant two trees using proper methods, listen to original poetry about trees by WSU students, learn about the science of how trees grow by studying tree “cookies” and enjoy USFWS Ranger Ed’s “habitat bubble” to learn about the species and benefits of trees in the Mississippi River bottoms.

In the afternoon, about 30 Winona Senior High School students will listen to original poetry about trees, learn about proper tree planting techniques by planting two trees, and engage in a hands-on exercise that teaches the benefits and value of trees for the environment.

Over the past five years, WSU’s Arbor Day celebration has partnered with eight local schools and hosted over 350 students to learn about the approximately 104 species of trees on the WSU campus (including all fifty-two species native to Minnesota). Students have learned why trees matter at WSU and around the world, studying everything from aesthetic beauty, habitat and food value to wildlife, storm-water and erosion prevention benefits, help with improving air quality, storage of carbon from the atmosphere and heating and cooling benefits.

The theme for WSU’s 2017 Arbor Day Celebration is “Trees Supporting Bees (and their friends)!” Learn why selecting trees that support pollinators helps with productive backyard gardens as well as commercial food production, not to mention protecting the biodiversity and beauty of our landscapes.

For more information, contact Jim Reynolds at JReynolds@winona.edu.

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Brian Waldbillig

Brian is a Public Relations major and Communication Studies minor from Farmington, MN. His hobbies include photography, hiking and going to concerts.