Gretna community celebrates Arbor Day with 27 new trees in local park

Gretna residents celebrate Arbor Day by planting trees
Published: Apr. 29, 2023 at 12:24 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

GRETNA, Neb. (WOWT) - To celebrate Arbor Day, a local business along with Gretna’s Arbor Society, gathered in Lincoln Park to plant 27 new trees, bringing more life to the area.

“I love trees, and I wanted to put together a grant proposal, we are slowly and systematically trying to help encourage and plant more trees in local parks,” says Amy Nakai, who spearheaded the operation.

Nakai owns Rooted Tree Specialists, the state’s first ground-level, female-owned and operated tree company.

Nakai also sits on Gretna’s Tree Board, and for the fourth year in a row, Nakai received a grant from the Natural Resources District to help plant dozens of new trees around the Gretna community.

“Trees are integral not only in just the tree canopy, but they also provide habitats for wildlife, they help provide shade, they help prevent water runoff, they help reduce your electricity bill,” Nakai adds.

Many of the 27 trees planted on Saturday in Lincoln Park are native to Nebraska.

“Hackberries, oak trees, sycamore trees, cheery trees, we have a wide variety of different ones which is also critical, you want to be able to plant biodiverse - you don’t want to plant just one tree in case an insect or a disease comes by and wipes out a number of trees.”

Part of Nakai’s goal in her role on the tree board and as an arborist is education. She wants to teach community members about the important role trees play in our lives, as well as how to properly plant them.

“We had the opportunity to kind of come together and show our girls what I think is a lifelong skill, how to plant a tree so they can help make our community better,” says Andrea O’Quin, a co-leader of Girl Scout Troop 48911.

Troop 48911 was there Saturday morning to help plant, and to learn. They were also achieving one of their many goals as a scout - the tree promise.

“They do learn about the importance trees have on our environment and the culmination of that is to actually promise to plant multiple trees, so, this is the first step for many of those girls in fulfilling their tree promise,” O’Quin adds.