This year, National Arbor Day 2021 is April 30, 2021. Pennsylvania celebrates Arbor Day on the last Friday of the month of April. This year, it falls on the same day as the national celebration. Other states sometimes adjust the day or month they recognize arbor day to better fit with planting times, so throughout the country, Arbor Day can fall anywhere from January to December. Here is a state-by-state list of Arbor Day celebrations throughout the country.

Arbor comes from the Latin word for “tree.” So basically, Arbor Day is plant-a-tree day.

History of Arbor Day

When pioneers began to move West, they crossed into the Nebraska Territory which was generally prairie and so was mostly tree-less. A local newspaper editor, J. Sterling Morton, advocated for the importance of trees and his enthusiasm encouraged people to plant them. In April 1872, the State of Nebraska declared Arbor Day a state holiday. More than a million trees were believed to be planted in Nebraska on the very first Arbor Day.

Other states joined in and by 1920, more than 45 states and territories celebrated Arbor Day at some point in the spring with tree-planting, contests, educational programs, and more.

Arbor Day 2021

Arbor Day in Pennsylvania

Various activities are planned for Arbor Day 2021 (and some throughout the week or even the month) in various locales in Pennsylvania. But as with 2020, many of the celebrations are virtual events. Tree Pittsburgh has a schedule for various celebrations in and around the Pittsburgh area. You can find out about those here.

Arbor Day at Your House

If you can’t celebrate Arbor Day by planting a tree at a local park or attending a public event, you can always plant a tree in your own yard. Planting trees add value to your home. Eventually, it will provide shade. A tree gives a home to birds and other small creatures. Trees protect soil from erosion. They also help to clean the air you breathe by absorbing harmful toxins such as ozone, nitrogen oxides, and carbon monoxide and releasing oxygen back into the air.

Where to Get Trees

If you join the Arbor Day Foundation, you can receive 10 free trees to plant in your yard or to plant in a forest in your honor. You can also get discounts on trees and shrubs in their online tree nursery. You can find out more here.

If you don’t have your own yard to plant a tree in, we can help. Check out these homes with virtual tours in Fayette County, Pennsylvania.