Arbor Day celebrated

Alex Doty • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:32 PM

The students helped the Grand Haven Department of Public Works plant new trees on Friday at Sluka Field for Arbor Day. They also learned a bit about trees and Arbor Day during the event.

Elizabeth Ripple, 10, was one of the students who took a turn with the shovel to plant a new river birch tree at the east-side park.

“I think it’s really fun,” she said.

Ripple said she planned to return to the park often to check on the tree they planted.

“My grandma lives near here and I’ll be able to come here a lot,” she said.

The tree planting on Arbor Day is one of many the city does each year to manage its urban forest.

Several years ago, City Council made it a goal to plant 1,000 new trees in a five-year period.

“We have been maintaining that,” City Manager Pat McGinnis said.

McGinnis said the city tries to plant a variety of trees. He said the city wants to diversify its tree population so that a disease or bug that targets one variety wouldn't affect all of the trees in Grand Haven.

In recent years, the city has conducted inventories of its trees along streets to get an idea of what they have and what other types could be planted. McGinnis said the next inventory could be on public land like parks.

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