- Author: Janet Hartin
A major focus of the UC Cooperative Extension (UCCE) Master Gardener program in San Bernardino County is the “Trees for Tomorrow” project in partnership with the Inland Empire Resource Conservation District and over 30 other community-based partners and agencies. Over the past three years, over 1,200 climate-resilient trees have been
Why is this project so important? California has the lowest per capita tree canopy cover in the United States, a mere 108 square feet, disproportionally impacting people of color. Many neighborhoods in both San Bernardino County have tree canopy cover far below the recommended 25% - 40%, directly linked to extreme heat, high ozone concentrations, and high rates of cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. A major reason for this low canopy cover is the result of fewer trees being planted in disadvantaged communities with low tax bases than in others. Another major reason is due to poor tree species selection and long-term maintenance, resulting in fewer than 40% of urban trees, on average, living beyond 20 years.
An important aspect of the project is its strong bilingual educational component that includes written tree planting and care information and in-person presentations describing the attributes of the climate-resilient tree species offered and tree care tips. Both help ensure that trees reach maturity, maximizing their ecosystem and social benefits. Another key
Please contact me if you'd like to be a partner or contribute trees or funding to purchase them. We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, and your tax-deductible contribution is deeply appreciated!