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Shade Love

How much do I love trees? Let me count the ways… they reduce your cooling needs. They purify the air. They provide much-needed shade. What’s not to love?

Have you ever taken the time to understand what’s so wonderful about trees? Why do we love them so much?

I know that when we were looking for our new home it had to have at least one mature tree. I also know that the reason my husband and I love to get away to Hyde Park in Austin, Texas is because the community is filled with grand, mature and beautiful trees – every block is shady and enjoyable, even in August. It’s why we took our last vacation to Portland, Ore. — to experience the beauty of their forests and plentiful trees even in the urban setting.

A simple internet search took me to this website, which lists a bountiful number of reasons to love and plant trees. I’ll summarize a few of their points:

1 – If you wince at your summer cooling bills as much as we do, you’ll be willing to try most anything to get them down. Planting a tree on the South and West side of your home can drastically reduce your cooling needs, as the ground beneath trees can be up to 25 degrees cooler than surrounding blacktop areas.

2 – We all learned this in our middle school science class, but maybe a reminder is needed.

Trees do a miraculous job of purifying our air, storing about 13 pounds of carbon each year. Got an acre of trees? That equals 2.6 tons of carbon dioxide.

3 – The appearance of a tree laden community makes it more livable. Think of the communities you love to visit. They’re likely beautifully shaded with stunning, mature trees. Well-shaded communities also encourage homeowners and their families to actually get out and enjoy the shade, boosting neighborhood pride and strengthening civic relationships.

This year’s fall coupon requires you to plant at least two small trees. Are you ready to sign up and reap the benefits?

Erin Conant
Erin Conant
Erin Conant has a passion for all things related to plants. Our former SAWS conservation consultant is now at home with her family passionately establishing their own urban farm and spreading the word of water conservation.
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