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.