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Tree planting encouraged to combat climate change

Residents can plant trees as part of the Backyard Tree Planting Program, which works to protect and improve the world’s urban forests through planting, education and training. (Photo courtesy

Property owners are being invited by the region to put down roots.

Residents can help fight climate change through a partnership between a local not-for-profit organization and participating Durham municipalities, which will provide support to restore and improve properties by planting native trees and shrubs.

Residential, multi-unit, or commercial property owners located in Oshawa, Pickering, Whitby and Scugog can apply to the subsidized Backyard Tree Planting Program offered by LEAF (Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests), which is expanding on the success of the program offered in Ajax since 2015.

LEAF is committed to protecting and improving the world’s urban forests through planting, education and training. They help property owners choose and plant the right trees, while offering resources to ensure proper long-term care.

Through the full service program, property owners receive a consultation with a certified arborist, a 1.5 to 2.4-metre tall tree and full planting service, for $150 to $220 per tree.

This low price is possible because the program is subsidized by the region and participating municipalities. Arborist consultations will take place over the summer, with modified procedures, to comply with physical distancing. Planting will occur in the fall.

“Trees are an essential part of our green infrastructure – helping to improve the air we breathe, providing much needed shade and privacy, and reducing noise pollution and storm water runoff,” says Oshawa Mayor Dan Carter. “We are excited for this collaboration with LEAF, the region and our municipal partners, which will see even more residents and businesses in Oshawa helping grow our tree canopy while enjoying these benefits right at home in their own backyards.”

To apply to the Backyard Tree Planting Program, visit the LEAF website or call 1-888-453-6504 for more information.