(DeLand, FL) – The City of DeLand has been designated by the Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree City USA for the 30th consecutive year.
(DeLand, FL) – The City of DeLand has been designated by the
Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree City USA for the 30th consecutive
The distinction recognizes communities that practice sound
urban forestry management. To be a Tree City USA, cities must maintain a tree
board or department, have a community tree ordinance, spend at least $2 per
capita on urban forestry and celebrate Arbor Day.
According to the Arbor Day Foundation, there were more than
3,400 communities across the nation that are designated a Tree City USA
including 179 municipalities in Florida. DeLand joins a select group of Florida
cities that have maintained their Tree City USA status for 30 or more years.
DeLand’s link to trees began shortly after its founding in
1882. According to historical accounts, town officials in 1886 offered
residents 50 cents off their taxes for each oak tree they planted that lived
for a year. So many trees were planted that the city had to repeal the tax
break the following year, but the trees lived on and many still line the city’s
streets in its historic district.
Today, the city’s Public Works Department is responsible for
maintaining roughly 4,000 trees in its nursery and more than 7,000 trees on city
property. The city has partnered with the DeLand Breakfast Rotary Club for the
past 20 years to provide free trees to residents. It is estimated that more
than 20,000 trees have been distributed as a part of that program.
“We are proud of the city’s tree heritage and my hope is
that our heritage will continue to be preserved well into the future,” said
Mayor Bob Apgar. “I commend our Public Works crews for the hard work over the
years to maintain our distinction as a Tree City USA.”