Central Okanagan cities kick off tree planting programs | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Central Okanagan cities kick off tree planting programs

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February 29, 2020 - 1:00 PM

Central Okanagan residents can help create a greener community with West Kelowna and Kelowna tree planting programs.

Starting March 2, residents can visit West Kelowna City Hall and purchase one of 150 available trees to beautify their yards.

For $60, residents can pre-purchase one of five different eight-to-10-foot tall trees in 10-gallon pots. Residents can choose between autumn blaze maple, toba hawthorn, sunburst honey locust, muckle plum or pekin tree lilac – while supplies last.  Purchase before March 27, according to the City of West Kelowna in a press release.

The inaugural Urban Re-Leaf Program is a residential planting initiative developed to encourage citizens to plant trees and increase the canopy throughout West Kelowna.

Once purchased, residents can pick up their tree at the Urban Re-Leaf 2020 event Saturday, April 4, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the gravel lot next to Mount Boucherie Recreation Complex.

Parks staff will be on-site assisting with the pickup and providing information and demonstrations on how to plant the new trees.

For more information on the program and to pick which tree will work best for you, head to the city’s website

In Kelowna, a similar program, the NeighbourWoods Program, is taking place April 18 with tree sales beginning in early March.

Set up your online account in advance to be ready to pre-order your tree online once they become available.

If you've used the online registration system to sign up for an Active Living and Culture program in the past year, you likely already have an account. Otherwise, call 250-469-8800 to set up your account, according to the City of Kelowna's website.

This year’s tree sales will include autumn gold gingko, galaxy magnolia, ivory silk Japanese tree lilac, Redpointe maple, showy mountain ash and urban pinnacle oak.

Trees improve air quality by removing atmospheric carbon dioxide, absorbing pollutants and producing oxygen. The average Canadian urban tree is estimated to remove approximately 200 kg of carbon from the environment over an 80-year lifespan, according to the city's website.

According to an Urban Forest Effects Analysis completed in 2007, Kelowna’s current tree canopy at about 13 per cent, while the recommended tree cover for our area is 20 per cent, according to the city’s website.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Carli Berry or call 250-864-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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