Today, the UH Mānoa campus held a tree-planting and tree-give-away event to celebrate Hawai’i Arbor Day. These events are part of the Arbor Day Foundation‘s Tree Campus USA program, which encourages local involvement in planting and awareness of forest and tree issues. If you are like me and grew up in one of the many states that celebrates Arbor Day on the federal date in April, you may be confused as to why we are celebrating it in November. As I learned today, many states celebrate their own Arbor Days to coincide better with local climate. The majority of states celebrate it sometime in April; all but two celebrate it sometime in the Spring. Only Hawai’i and South Carolina celebrate it in winter (theirs is first Friday in December).
Anyhow, Tree Campus USA set up shop in the quad behind Hawai’i Hall, complete with ~20 trees to be planted throughout the quad, and six species of plants to give away to volunteers. Van Wishingrad (a UHM biology grad student) and I dropped by to plant and adopt. Van and I both adopted little money trees (Pachira aquatica), and planted a little betel palm (Areca catechu).
Since I teach on Fridays, I was improperly dressed for manual labor (particularly in the footwear department), so much of the work fell to Van. Still, it didn’t take long to get a decent hole dug and our little betal palm all snug in his new home!