Arbor Day

Florida celebrates Arbor Day on the third Friday of January and the national Arbor Day is recognized in April.

Julius Sterling Morton (1832-1902), a Nebraska journalist and politician originally from Michigan, felt that Nebraska's landscape and economy would benefit from the wide-scale planting of trees. He set an example himself by planting orchards, shade trees and wind breaks on his own farm and he urged his neighbors to do the same.  As a member of Nebraska's state board of agriculture, Morton proposed that a special day be set aside dedicated to tree planting and increasing awareness of the importance of trees.  On April 10, 1872, Nebraska's first Arbor Day was a success with more than one million trees being planted. 

Today all 50 states celebrate Arbor Day although the dates may vary in keeping with the local climate.  At the federal level, in 1970, President Richard Nixon proclaimed the last Friday in April as National Arbor Day.  Arbor Day is also now celebrated in other countries including Australia.