Last-minute Gifts That Make a Big Impact

Do you need a last-minute gift or two? Maybe the company holiday party snuck up on you or you just realized you accidently left Cousin Kathy off your gift list. Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. The Arbor Day Foundation has you covered with last-minute gift options that make a lasting impact on the environment.

tic-mark-photo-rightWith Trees in Celebration, each dollar donated plants a tree in one of our National Forests. And you can instantly print a commemorative certificate at home to give to the recipient. They’ll love this gift that continues to give long after the holidays are over.

Holiday Give-A-Tree® e-Cards can be easily delivered via email, and each card plants a tree to help revitalize our nation’s forests. Simply select one of our gorgeous e-card designs and add a personal message. It is that easy!

e-give-a-tree-mark-photo-rightThis holiday season, instead of knickknacks or gift cards, plant trees for your friends, family, and colleagues. Last-minute gift giving has never been so simple—or so environmentally friendly.

There is still time! Shop Trees in Celebration and Give-A-Tree e-Cards from the Arbor Day Foundation today and give a gift they’ll remember for a lifetime.

This Cyber Monday Shop The Arbor Day Foundation For Free Shipping

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Cyber Monday is a great day! Why is it great, you ask? I’ll tell you! It is the one day out of the entire year you can sit in the comfort of your chair, sip your cup of coffee, and have great deal after great deal available right at your fingertips. Ten years ago the Monday after Thanksgiving was coined as “Cyber Monday” – in short, Cyber Monday is like Black Friday but you get to avoid all the crowds and cold weather and shop from the comfort of your computer. I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a great day to me.

The Arbor Day Foundation has unique holiday gift options that give back. We offer Earth-friendly gifts for everyone on your list. Whether it’s tree planting in honor of a loved one, rain forest-saving coffee and chocolate, or an individually packaged evergreen, a gift from the Arbor Day Foundation can truly make a difference for our planet.

On Cyber Monday, be sure to add The Arbor Day Foundation to the list of web sites you shop for great deals and give your loved ones, friends, and colleagues a gift that has a lasting impact on the environment. Shop now for free shipping!

Plant Trees in Honor of Your Loved Ones

Wouldn’t it be great if you could help the environment and at the same time honor your loved ones? I am excited to tell you two touching ways to leave a lasting impression, through the Trees in Celebration and Trees in Memory program—an initiative that plants trees in celebration or in memory of your family and friends. It’s a win-win!

TIM_card_with_textWhether it is the celebration of a milestone birthday or anniversary, graduation from high school or college, or even the birth of a new baby – whatever the event, give them a gift that will live on long after the party is over. Trees in Celebration lets you celebrate your friends and family in an enduring way: every dollar plants a tree in one of our nation’s forests in the name of the recipient and is recorded in our official Tree Registry. You receive a commemorative certificate for every donation you make, or if you are giving a last-minute gift you have the option to print at home. It is that easy!

Just as we celebrate, we also grieve. Trees in Memory is a meaningful way to have trees planted in memory of a lost loved one or friend. I’ve personally donated to Trees in Memory in honor of those who have passed in lieu of flowers. I received notes of appreciation that the spirit of their loved one will live on in a lasting and memorable way.

Similar to Trees in Celebration, every donation plants trees in one of our nation’s forests that have been devastated by natural disasters, whether it’s a forest fire or storm. The name of the recipient will be recorded in our official Tree Registry and you have the option to ship the personalized card to yourself or directly to the recipient. In addition, you can download and print a certificate at home.

Planting a tree is an act of direct benefit to all. They benefit the environment in numerous ways, including clean air and water, combating climate change, and providing habitat for animals – to name just a few. In addition to all of the environmental benefits, trees also provide healing attributes – including stress release.

The next time you are looking for a way to celebrate or memorialize your loved ones I encourage you to consider Trees in Celebration and Trees in Memory. You’ll be glad you did. Visit our website to get started.

Great Trees for Fall Color

One of the most wonderful things about fall is the spectacular displays of fall leaf color. The vibrant hues of crimson, oranges and yellow foliage along the streets enliven the daily commute. Searching and finding the best fall trees is often a destination trip for many across the country. Here are some of the finest fall trees that you can see almost anywhere.

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Baldcypress The unique combination of being a deciduous conifer creates a majestic orange-red color. This tree can be found throughout most of the United States (zones 4 to 10).

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Sugar Maple This landscape standout can be seen in all but the warmest places in the United States (zones 3 to 8). The leaves of the Sugar Maple can form a complete color wheel throughout the year, turning several shades of green, then from yellow to orange, and finally to red in the fall. The diversity of this tree makes it impressive all year round but especially in the fall.

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Red Maple This classic fall tree can either be deep red or yellow. Throughout the year at least a part of this tree is red, making it one of the best named trees. This tree is common throughout most of the United States (zones 3 to 9) and can grow up to 60 feet in height.

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Black Tupelo Known for its spectacular fall foliage, the Black Tupelo can contain many shades on the same branch. Frequent colors seen on the leaves of this autumn beauty include yellow, orange, bright red, purple and scarlet. Look for this bird-friendly tree throughout most of the United States (zones 4 to 9) with the exclusion of the extreme North and South.

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Aspen Thousands of people make the journey to watch the Aspen turn throughout the Rocky Mountains. The spectacular yellow leaves of the Aspen create a brilliant contrast with surrounding pine trees, making this a fan favorite. Residents living in the South will have to make the journey to see the Aspen change because this tree is typically in zones 1 to 7.

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  1. Sourwood The Sourwood is a great year round tree with its white fragrant flowers in early summer. But it is the fall leaves that get it on this list. Each autumn the rich green leaves of the Sourwood turn to yellow, red or even purple. Unlike the Aspen, this fall tree prefers the southern states growing in zones 5-9. Check out Sourwood: A Sweet Surprise if you’re considering planting on in your yard.

Sassafras_2-917[1]Sassafras The brilliant display of fall foliage makes the Sassafras a must have on this list. The native North American tree (zones 4 to 9) changes from bright to medium green in summer to enchanting colors of deep orange, scarlet, purple and yellow in the fall.

American-Sweetgum_1-928[1]Sweetgum Deep, glossy green, star-shaped leaves mark the Sweetgum in the spring and summer. As the days shorten the leaves turn yellow to purple tored. The leaves of the Sweetgum stay on the tree quite late in the season throughout its range (zones 5-9).

Japanese-Red-Maple_5-866[1]Japanese Maple Although it is grown in a more limited range (zone 5 to 8) this short tree or shrub is a great fall choice. The versatile species often has brilliant color throughout the year but as winter approaches, the trees’ reddish-purple leaves create dramatic fall views.

Whether you’re driving to a destination or driving aimlessly, the selection of fall colors makes the journey an exciting ride. What are some of your favorite fall trees?

Our Hardiness Zone Map Gets a Refresh

The Arbor Day Foundation distributes millions of trees every year, so it’s important that we have an accurate hardiness zone map. This map separates the country into ten different temperature zones to help people select the right trees to plant where they live. Knowing this information helps us—and you—ensure the trees you receive have the best chance of thriving. It’s one of the important tools in any tree planter’s arsenal.

Hardiness-Zone-MapBecause of this, we gave ours an update. Take a moment to check out the Arbor Day Foundation’s new 2015 Hardiness Zone Map, based upon data from 5,000 National Climatic Data Center cooperative stations across the continental United States.

We like to revise the map every 10 years or so to keep up with any temperature shifts that may have occurred. While not many areas changed with this update, people living in the  northeast or along the Ohio River Valley may be in a new zone.

Not sure what hardiness zone you’re in? We have a simple hardiness zone lookup tool to help you figure it out.

Spring into action! Are you ready for the spring planting season?

Spring is nearly here and we couldn’t be more excited. Soon we will be enjoying the beautiful colors and fragrances of spring trees and shrubs – like the dogwood, Japanese flowering cherry and of course the lilacs.

Japanese Cherry Bloss

Japanese flowering cherry

Now is the perfect time begin your spring planting planning and ordering! The Arbor Day Foundation Online Tree Nursery has a large array of affordable trees and shrubs. You will find fast-growing trees, flowering trees, fruit trees and every tree in between. And we will send your trees to you during the optimal time to plant in your zone, ensuring their health and longevity.

Or maybe you need some landscape design inspiration? Arborday.org has free, professionally designed landscape plans that focus on trees and shrubs, available to download for free. For example, we have a plan called flowering green giant, this a design plan combining a beautifully contrasting trio of trees—the rich green of a green giant arborvitae, the sprightly, springtime yellow of forsythia, and the dazzling profusion of white blooms that grace the yoshino cherry tree. Other designs include the a bird-attracting tree/shrub combination (Bird Magnet Hedgerow), a blooming shrub plan set beneath an existing shade tree (Shrubs Under a Shade Tree) , a flowering tree/hedge plan planted along an existing wood line (Flowering Woods Edge) – just to name a few.

Bird Magnet Design

Bird Magnet Hedgerow Design

If you already have your trees and are ready to plant consider reading our 9 Tree Care Tips & Techniques, an easy-to-follow guide that takes you step by step from selecting and planting the right tree, to the care and upkeep of a mature tree. Remember, what you do to your tree in its first few years of life will affect its shape, strength, and even its life span. Planting done with care and some knowledge of trees and their needs will help your trees grow more rapidly and live at least twice as long as improperly planted trees.

Finally, before you get that hole dug and your new tree planted, make sure you’ve got “Right Tree in the Right Place.” Planting an appropriate tree in an appropriate location is vital for the health and longevity of the tree as well as your satisfaction with it—for example, a tree too close to the house could be a hazard, and a tree with “too-tall” potential will be unlikely to remain if it interferes with a power line overhead.

Right Tree Right Place

Are you gearing up for spring planting season? What do you plan to plant this year? Please let us know in the comments.