Village officials help plant a tree for Arbor Day

GOSHEN. With 14 Main Street trees planted this year, the aim is to earn the esteemed Tree City, USA designation.

| 07 May 2023 | 05:06

To honor Arbor Day on April 28, the Village of Goshen planted a new tree - a young oak - in front of High Withers Wine & Spirits at 83 W. Main St. in the downtown business district.

Village officials, including Mayor Molly O’Donnell and Trustee Scott Wohl, were on hand to help shovel some dirt and cover the roots. Also helping at the event were former mayor Marcia Mattheus and Goshenite Carly Glasse, both members of the Village of Goshen Forestry Council. Marlee Johnston, part of the executive team with Lisa Clancey, represented the Goshen Chamber of Commerce.

“I hope the community acknowledges the many trees that have been planted in the downtown area — appropriate trees,” said Mattheus, explaining that the limbs don’t branch out on these trees, so they won’t interfere with people walking down the street.

Peter Patel, Horticultural Supervisor at Orange County Arboretum, added that the oak tree planted on this Arbor Day would “stay tight, not conflict with the building, and not conflict with parking spaces.”

Arbor Day had its beginnings in Nebraska in 1872, with a state proclamation urging settlers and homesteaders to plant trees “to provide shade, shelter, fruit and fuel, and beauty on the largely treeless plains.” Trees are also beneficial as shade providers, lowering temperatures, and as windbreakers that help in controlling soil erosion. On the first Arbor Day, more than one million trees were planted across the state of Nebraska.

The Village of Goshen has planted 14 trees on Main Street this year. Village officials are aiming to earn the esteemed Tree City, USA designation that requires maintaining a tree board, having a community tree ordinance, spending at least $2.00 per capita on urban forestry, an the celebration of Arbor Day.

“It’s wonderful to see the restarting of tree planting in the Village,” Mattheus said. She noted that tree planting began years ago in the late 1990s but has lagged a bit. “I’m excited about the rebirth,” she added.

Mattheus said she recalled planting trees at the schools with the help of children while she was village mayor from 1999 to 2003. She added that she’s hoping to see more plantings take place at the schools with student involvement.

Trustee Wohl recently restarted the program while he served his last term as mayor, 2021-2023. There are more than 3,400 Tree Cities, USA across the nation. The Village of Goshen is looking forward for addition to that number.

“Filing an application for Tree City, USA under the DEC will make Goshen accessible for support and funding from the State agency,” Mattheus said.

“I credit Scott Wohl for getting us back to Tree City, USA status,” O’Donnell said. She also thanked the Department of Public Works employees and the Forestry Counsel “for dedication to the Village’s commitment to ensuring a green community.

“We’re happy to recognize Arbor Day today, April 28, 2023,” the mayor added.