311 Help Desk
City of harrisburg logo
City of harrisburg logo

{HARRISBURG} — The City of Harrisburg is honored again to receive the designation as a “Tree City USA” from the national Arbor Day Foundation.

Harrisburg achieved Tree City USA status by meeting the program’s four requirements: maintaining a tree board or department, having a tree care ordinance, dedicating an annual community forestry budget of at least $2 per capita, and hosting an Arbor Day observance and proclamation.

The City of Harrisburg covers all four categories, the last of which was completed last week, when Mayor Wanda R.D. Williams presented an Arbor Day proclamation to City Forester Cody Legge and a series of volunteers who were planting trees near Wilson Park.

“This is a real honor for the city and the dozens of volunteers who help us beautify our neighborhoods with new tree plantings every spring and fall,” Legge said. “Seasonal tree plantings help reduce environmental issues we see around us every day. Air pollution reduction, stormwater management, energy savings, and carbon sequestering are all problems that can be alleviated by simply planting trees.”

The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation, in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, and the National Association of State Foresters.

“The trees being planted and cared for by Harrisburg are ensuring that generations to come will enjoy a better quality of life,” said Dan Lambe, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Additionally, participation in this program brings residents together and creates a sense of civic pride, whether it’s through volunteer engagement or public education.”

Since 2019, the City of Harrisburg has planted more than 500 new trees, largely by volunteers. In April, the city planted more than two dozen trees in the area by Taylor Park Apartments and another two dozen by Wilson Park in East Harrisburg.

The City of Harrisburg hosts seasonal tree plantings in the Spring, and then again in the Fall, with a different neighborhood targeted each time. Property owners are offered new street trees, suitable for their site, at no cost. Residents are asked if they can help plant their own tree, and that they also care for it until it becomes an established tree.

Harrisburg has earned the national Tree City USA distinction by the Arbor Day Foundation multiple times, putting Harrisburg into a class of municipalities that values environmental concern. Keeping and displaying this award generates pride among the residents and holds current and future administrations to its standard.