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LifestyleHome and Garden

Nassau schools get free shade trees

Zelkova trees like this one will be planted

Zelkova trees like this one will be planted at schools all over Nassau County. Photo Credit: Richard Webb, Self-employed horticulurist,

Eight-foot-tall Zelkova shade trees will be given to schools throughout Nassau County as part of the "Greening of Nassau II" program coordinated by the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Nassau County, which has arranged for the plantings to help ensure the long-term sustainability of mature trees throughout the county.

The elegant, upright, vase-shaped trees typically live to a ripe old age and also are valued for the shade they provide. All the districts have received instructional materials for educational tie-ins to help students better understand the importance of trees in reducing air pollution, protecting soil, lowering the volume, providing shelter for animals, keeping cool and adding beautify to the landscape. Zelkova's make great sidewalk trees, too, as they thrive in street and city conditions.

All but one Nassau County School District accepted the donated tree. 

The initiative has been arranged in cooperation with Nassau County Legislator Norma Gonsalves and Nassau County Commissioner of the Department of Public Works Shila Sha-Gavnoudias to provide large shade trees to Nassau County school districts. The program was supported by the Nassau Boces, Plant Health Care, DEC, League of Woman Voters and the USDA.

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