Arbor Day or National Tree Day

What is the difference between Arbor day, and National Tree Day?

Does Canada celebrate both?


Arbor day originates in the etymology; Latin arbor, meaning tree.  On April 10, 1872 the state of Nebraska became the first state in America to celebrate Arbor Day by planting one million trees!  However, the Spanish village of Mondoñedo held the first abor plantation festival as early as 1594.  The roots of our modern “Arbor Day” was launched in 1805 in Villanueva de la Sierra, Spain.  According to the Arbor Day Foundation, countries around the world celebrate trees at various times during the year.

“By creating National Tree Day, the House has asked Canadians to spend just one day reflecting on the link between their lives and that of the tree,” said Royal Galipeau, Member of Parliament.  “Canadians will dedicate trees, plant trees, learn about trees and appreciate the impact the tree has had on Canada’s economic success as a nation.”

Canada celebrates Maple Leaf Day orNational Tree Day in the middle of National Forest Week, as Maple Leaf Day falls on the last Wednesday of September.

“The federal government is proud to help celebrate Canada’s first National Tree Day,” said the Honourable Joe Oliver, Minister of Natural Resources. “Forests are not only an important part of our heritage, they are also essential to our future. Every tree planted today helps preserve our forests for future generations”

Maple Leaf Day has its origins with Sir George W. Ross, later the Premier of Ontario, when he was Minister of Education in Ontario (1883-1899). According to the Ontario Teachers’ Manuals “History of Education” (1915), Ross established both Arbour Day and Empire Day – “the former to give the school children an interest in making and keeping the school grounds attractive, and the latter to inspire the children with a spirit of patriotism” Arbor Day  

National Tree Day.  Trees are essential to our lives.  They provide us with oxygen, clean our water, purify our air, elevate our mood and so much more. A tree can sequester 10 tonnes of carbon dioxide by the time it is 40 years old, so trees are invaluable to our battle against climate change. Not only must we take care of our forests, but we must also expand the living infrastructure within our cities.

Successive Canadian governments of all stripes have supported healthy forests, and are bringing more trees into cities. That is why Tree Canada, Canada’s leading national tree organization, has recognized the people of Canada with its coveted Eterne Award. Joyce Murray.  Open Parliament Government of Canada September 27, 2018

Whereas, the United States of America celebrates National Arbor Day on the last Friday of April, which will be April 26, 2019, though various states host their festivals according to the optimal planting time for their ecoregion.  Several Canadian provinces also plant trees, and celebrate Arbor Day as well, with a spring planting event.  Very interestingly, the United Kingdom also celebrates their National Tree Week in November, 24th November – 2nd December 2018. National Tree Week U.K. is  followed by National Tree Dressing Day on the first weekend of December. 

National Tree Dressing Day honours the life-giving blessings of trees and is based upon an ancient custom. “Trees have long been celebrated for their spiritual significance. The simplicity of tying strips of cloth or yarn to a tree is universal and timeless. The old Celtic custom of tying cloth dipped in water from a holy well to a ‘clootie tree’ echoes the practice in Japan of decorating trees with strips of white paper, or tanzaku, bearing wishes and poems. The twenty-first century trend of ‘yarn bombing’ in Europe and North America transforms the local landscape with bright fabrics and yarns, like the Buddhist tradition of tying ribbons around the trunk of the Bodhi tree in homage to Buddha, or the annual Hindu festival of Raksha Bandhan when coloured strings are tied onto trees and plants to call upon the power of nature to protect loved ones.”  Source  It’s a way to say thank you to the trees in your community.

” While Napoleon was ravaging Europe with his ambition in this village in the Sierra de Gata lived a priest, don Juan Abern Samtrés, which, according to the chronicles, “convinced of the importance of trees for health, hygiene, decoration, nature, environment and customs, decides to plant trees and give a festive air. The festival began on Carnival Tuesday with the ringing of two bells of the church, and the Middle and the Big. After the Mass, and even coated with church ornaments, don Juan, accompanied by clergies, teachers and a large number of neighbours, planted the first tree, a poplar, in the place known as Valley of the Ejido. Tree plantations continued by Arroyada and Fuente de la Mora. Afterwards, there was a feast, and did not miss the dance. The party and plantations lasted three days. He drafted a manifesto in defence of the trees that was sent to surrounding towns to spread the love and respect for nature, and also he advised to make tree plantations in their localities.”
— Miguel Herrero Uceda, Arbor Day

This Arbour Day celebration is separate from the International Forests Day, March 21, was adopted by the United Nations to raise “awareness at all levels in order to strengthen the sustainable management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests and trees outside forests for the benefit of current and future generations…[regarding] Forests and Sustainable Cities…Forests and trees store carbon, which helps mitigate the impacts of climate change in and around urban areas.” Source

World Forestry Day, March 21, was inaugurated 1971 at the 23rd General Assembly of European Confederation of Agriculture, “to increase the public awareness among communities about the values, significance and contributions of the forests to balance the life cycle on the earth…. Loss of the forests enhances the loss of inhabitant animal species to the forest. Deforestation imbalances the balance of natural climate which lead to the global warming by increasing the CO2 and decreasing the O2 percentage all across the world.”

Since 1970, Earth Day supports environmental protection,  and was supported by the  2016 acknowledging the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference historic draft climate protection treaty.  Earth Day was first celebrated on the first day of spring (northern hemisphere) March 21, 1970, however, United States Senator Gaylord Nelson initiated Earth Day on April 22 in America.  March for Science is also commemorated April 22, and the People’s Climate Mobilization follows on April 29.

Paul D. Tinari organized Canada’s Earth Day September 11, 1980 during Earth Day Week beginning Sept 6, 1980.

Trees have a way of bringing people together to celebrate a shared heritage. With over 80% of Canadians living in cities and towns, our urban forests are vital to our quality of life, and this recognition will go a long way toward ensuring that they continue to be planted and cared for in urban locations… For every person who stops and thinks about how they can help grow and maintain trees, Canada becomes a cleaner, better country.Cision Canada

The United Nations celebrates International Mother Earth Day on April 22 “to remind each of us that the Earth and its Ecosystems provide us with life and sustenance….The Earth and its ecosystems are our home. In order to achieve a just balance among the economic, social, and environmental needs of present and future generations, it is necessary to promote harmony with nature and the Earth.”

World Environment Day is celebrated June 5.

“World Environment Day reminds us that we have a global responsibility to safeguard our environment – and that each of us has a role to play to preserve and protect it.”

Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister

in 1922, Richard St. Barbe Baker began the International Tree Foundation with Forest Guides, or Forest Scouts, called the Watu wa Miti, or Men of the Trees who… “promised before N’gai, the High God, that they would protect the native forest, plant ten native trees each year, and take care of trees everywhere.”

For directions as to how to drive to “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park

For directions on how to drive to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

For more information:

Blairmore Sector Plan Report; planning for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area,  George Genereux Urban Regional Park and West Swale and areas around them inside of Saskatoon city limits

P4G Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth The P4G consists of the Cities of Saskatoon, Warman, and Martensville, the Town of Osler and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park; planning for areas around the afforestation area and West Swale outside of Saskatoon city limits

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SE 23-36-6 – SW Off-Leash Recreation Area (Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area ) – 355 Township Road 362-A
S ½ 22-36-6 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (West of SW OLRA) – 467 Township Road 362-A
NE 21-36-6 “George Genereux” Afforestation Area – 133 Range Road 3063
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page:
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Where is the George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Afforestation Area)? with map

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Facebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Facebook: South West OLRA

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

Please help protect / enhance your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail)

Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year).  Please donate by paypal using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT, or by using e-transfers  Please and thank you!  Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated.  Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date!

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“Clearly, human pressure is exerting a sudden and cataclysmic impact on much of this province, if viewed in the time-frame of evolution and geology to which the rhythms of ecosystems are tuned. The groundswell of environmental concern taking shape among us, its citizens, results in public pressure for new and stronger strictures on human exploitation and desecration…Such action is needed as the embodiment of an ethical responsibility to the land and living things, for our own well-being as well as for that of all other species.” Theberge, 1989. P.376

“To be in a better position to help them I studied their language [Kenya’s Kikuyu people], their folklore and tribal customs, and was initiated into their secret society, an ancient institution which safeguarded the history of the past which was handed down by word of mouth through its members.

Soon I came to understand and love these people and wanted to be of service to them. They called me “Bwana M‘Kubwa,” meaning “Big Master,” but I said, “I am your M‘tumwe” (slave).” Richard St. Barbe Baker

“I believe in the Oneness of Mankind and all living things and the interdependence of each and all.” Richard St. Barbe Baker

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