Celebrate Trees on Earth Day (April 22)

TREES

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

 

written February 2, 1913 by Alfred Joyce Kilmer 

 

 

Decorate Your Yard with an Ornamental Tree

by George and Becky Lohmiller

If you are looking for an attractive ornamental tree for your yard, there are the old standbys like crabapple, flowering cherry, hawthorn, or Japanese maple. While any one of these trees will add interest for part of the season, there are less common ones that have four-season value and are sure to have your friends asking, “Wow, what kind of tree is that?”

The Katsura Tree
(Cercidiphyllum japonicum)
Pyramidal when young, the 40 to 60–foot–tall tree assumes a graceful, rounded shape with maturity. The spring leaves start out in a rosy purple color and change to blue–green. In autumn, the 2 to 4–inch–long, heart–shaped foliage develops shades of yellow, orange, and apricot. As the leaves drop, they scent the air with a sweet, spicy fragrance with hints of cinnamon or caramel. Its lightly–peeling, shaggy brown bark carries katsura’s charm right through the winter.

The Persian Parrotia
(Parrotia persica)
This spectacular performer is sure to turn heads any time of the year. It grows a modest 20 to 40 feet tall with a 15 to 30–foot spread. In March or early April, a haze of small crimson flowers covers the tree, followed by developing reddish–purple leaves that mature to a deep green. It is parrotia’s brilliant autumn foliage, however, that really steals the show, with a breathtaking display of bright yellow, orange, and scarlet leaves. Exfoliating bark that reveals shades of creamy white, green, gray, and brown tones give this tree exceptional winter interest.

Japanese Stewartia
(Stewartia pseudocamellia)
Another small tree (20 to 40 feet tall), the Stewartia will brighten up any landscape. Its 2 to 3–inch–wide, white flowers with orange anthers resemble camellia blossoms and open in July. Young leaves start with a purple tint but later turn dark green. Stewartia’s stunning fall foliage is orange, red, or both. Its showy bark unfolds in layers, displaying a mosaic of grays, reds, and oranges that won’t go unnoticed in any season.

These three offbeat ornamentals are hardy to Zone 4 and are seldom bothered by insects or diseases. It is probably by coincidence that all of these trees end in the letter “a,” but we think that for the outstanding job they perform in the landscape, this should probably be changed to an “A+.”

To find your area’s Plant Hardiness Zone, according to The Old Farmer’s Almanac, click here.

 

 

Answers to the Earth Day Trivia Quiz

Earth Day HistoryEarth Day - April 22

Ever wondered how Earth Day started? This observance arose from an interest in gathering national support for environmental issues. In 1970, San Francisco activist John McConnell and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson separately asked Americans to join in a grassroots demonstration. McConnell chose the spring equinox (March 21, 1970) and Nelson chose April 22. Millions of people participated, and today Earth Day continues to be widely celebrated with events on both dates. The most common practice of celebration is to plant new trees for Earth Day.

 

1. Earth Day was first celebrated in:
A. 1960
B. 1965
C. 1970
D. 1975

If you read the paragraph above, then you know the year was 1970.

 

2. Which household appliance uses the most energy?
A. Refrigerator
B. Toaster
C. Dishwasher
D. Washing machine

The answer is A — Refrigerators use about 11% of household’s total energy consumption.

Refrigerator

Refrigerators use about 11% of a household’s energy consumption…. especially when you keep the door open for a long period of time deciding what you want to eat!

Take Action: Buy Energy Star endorsed refrigerators, which will use less energy and save you money. Also, make sure your refrigerator is set to optimal energy-use temperatures (between 2°C and 3°C).

 

3. What country has the greatest number of coal-powered generators?
A. Canada
B. Russia
C. U.S.A.
D. China

The answer is D — China requires a great deal of energy to power their rapidly developing economy. Unfortunately, burning coal causes pollution.

 

4. “Phantom carriers” is a term used for electronic devices that:
A. Move from room to room
B. Continue to consume electricity even when switched off*
C. Are really expensive
D. Are energy efficient

The answer is B — “Phantom carriers” are products that draw power 24 hours a day. Appliances that have a clock or programming displays, such as coffee makers, DVD players, computers, printers and stereos, are considered phantom load carriers. 75% of the electricity used to power home electronics is consumed while the products are turned off.

 

5. What percentage do heating costs rise by for every degree above 20°C that you set your household thermostat in the winter?
A. 2%
B. 4%
C. 5%
D. 7%

The answer is C — Don’t overheat your home in the winter. Put on a sweater and dress accordingly in order to save money and to use less energy.

Save energy like this pooch who is snuggling under some blankets.

Save energy like this pooch who is snuggling under some blankets.

6. Your residential water heater uses of ________ your home’s energy and produces approximately two tones of carbon dioxide annually:
A.5%
B. 10%
C. 15%
D. 20%

The answer is C
Take Action: Turn down the thermostat on your water heater to reduce energy consumption. Often the level is set unnecessarily high for regular use. If you go on holiday or away for a long period of time, you can turn off the heater since the water does not need to be constantly heated when no one is home to use it.

 

7. Recycling 1,000 kg of aluminum saves enough energy to heat a/an ________ for 10 years.
A. Typical home
B. Elementary school
C. Corner store
D. Restaurant

The answer is A Recycling 1,000 kg of aluminum saves the equivalent of 10,000 L of gasoline.

 

8. What household appliance uses the second most amount of energy (the first is the refrigerator)?
A. Hair dryer
B. Clothes dryer
C. Microwave
D. Computer

The answer is B
Take Action: Whenever possible air-dry your laundry. You can use an outdoor clothes line or purchase a drying rack to use indoors. Air drying can save $85 in energy costs per year and help reduce your impact on the environment.

 

laundry room

Save energy in the laundry room.

9. What is the most energy efficient cycle to wash and rinse your clothes on?
A. Cold-cold
B. Warm-cold
C. Hot-cold
D. Warm-cold

The answer is A
Take Action: Use cold water to wash your clothes. If every household in Canada did this, it would reduce approximately 1.5 billion kilograms of greenhouse gas emissions yearly.

 

10. Which energy source produces the greatest amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide?
A. Natural gas
B. Nuclear
C. Oil
D. Coal

The answer is D — Gases emitted from coal burning plants contribute to acid rain and global warming.

11. What type of sector uses the greatest amount of electricity?
A. Commercial and industrial
B. Restaurant and fast food
C. Residential
D. Institutional

The answer is  A — The commercial sector uses almost 70% of all electricity produced.
Take Action: When at home or at work, make sure to turn off lights, computers and other energy-consuming equipment when not in use.

Earth Day Trivia Quiz

Earth Day 2015Earth Day History

Ever wondered how Earth Day started? This observance arose from an interest in gathering national support for environmental issues. In 1970, San Francisco activist John McConnell and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson separately asked Americans to join in a grassroots demonstration. McConnell chose the spring equinox (March 21, 1970) and Nelson chose April 22. Millions of people participated, and today Earth Day continues to be widely celebrated with events on both dates. The most common practice of celebration is to plant new trees for Earth Day.

1. Earth Day was first celebrated in:
A. 1960
B. 1965
C. 1970
D. 1975

2. Which household appliance uses the most energy?
A. Refrigerator
B. Toaster
C. Dishwasher
D. Washing machine

3. What country has the greatest number of coal-powered generators?
A. Canada
B. Russia
C. U.S.A.
D. China

4. “Phantom carriers” is a term used for electronic devices that:
A. Move from room to room
B. Continue to consume electricity even when switched off*
C. Are really expensive
D. Are energy efficient

5. What percentage do heating costs rise by for every degree above 20°C that you set your household thermostat in the winter?
A. 2%
B. 4%
C. 5%
D. 7%

6. Your residential water heater uses of ________ your home’s energy and produces approximately two tones of carbon dioxide annually:
A. 5%
B. 10%
C. 15%
D. 20%

7. Recycling 1,000 kg of aluminum saves enough energy to heat a/an ________ for 10 years.Recycle aluminum cans
A. Typical home
B. Elementary school
C. Corner store
D. Restaurant

8. What household appliance uses the second most amount of energy (the first is the refrigerator)?
A. Hair dryer
B. Clothes dryer
C. Microwave
D. Computer

dryer and laundry basket

What setting is the most energy efficient when doing laundry?

9. What is the most energy efficient cycle to wash and rinse your clothes on?
A. Cold-cold
B. Warm-cold
C. Hot-cold
D. Warm-cold

10. Which energy source produces the greatest amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide?
A. Natural gas
B. Nuclear
C. Oil
D. Coal

11. What type of sector uses the greatest amount of electricity?
A. Commercial and industrial
B. Restaurant and fast food
C. Residential
D. Institutional

 

Answers will be revealed later today!

Earth Day – Tuesday, April 22, 2015

When is Earth Day 2015? This observance always falls on April 22. On Earth Day, enjoy the tonic of fresh air, contact with the soil, and companionship with nature! Walk through the woods in search of emerging wildflowers and green moss. Go outside, no matter what the weather!Earth Day, April 22

Earth Day History

Ever wondered how Earth Day started? This observance arose from an interest in gathering national support for environmental issues. In 1970, San Francisco activist John McConnell and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson separately asked Americans to join in a grassroots demonstration. McConnell chose the spring equinox (March 21, 1970) and Nelson chose April 22. Millions of people participated, and today Earth Day continues to be widely celebrated with events on both dates. The most common practice of celebration is to plant new trees for Earth Day.