Tree giveway among Arbor Day events on Friday

Published: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 at 03:16 PM.

Planting these and other trees native to northwest Florida is preferable to importing non-native exotic species, such as the palm trees some residents like to plant in their yards, retired forester and Forest Service Poet Laureate John McMahon said.

“Native trees are likely to adapt better to our local conditions,” he said. “They grew up here and are acclimated to growing in our soil. They’ve adapted to our conditions, including our colder winters. They are easier to maintain than exotic trees.”

Events begin Friday at 9 a.m. with the sapling giveaway, which lasts until noon or until all trees are given away.

Dedication of the DAR’s winged elm is at 10:30 a.m.; Dunning’s planting demonstration will follow.

Coffee and a guided tour of the new extension building will be provided at 11 a.m.

All events are free.

McMahon encouraged interested residents to visit the Crestview McMahon Environmental Center on Butler Circle, off Maypoles Street, beneath the fire tower. The center has been the location of past years’ Arbor Day events.

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