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NDSU Celebrates Arbor Day with Tree Campus USA Designation and Ongoing Tree Research

Fargo, N.D., April 27, 2023 – North Dakota State University was honored with Tree Campus Higher Education recognition by the Arbor Day Foundation for the 12th straight year.

“Trees are an important component to a lively and vibrant campus,” said Michael Ellingson, director of Facilities Management. “Being the longest standing Tree Campus USA university in the state is something we are very proud of. Our consistent commitment to Tree Campus USA standards greatly benefits our NDSU community and environment as a whole.”

Tree Campus USA is a national program created in 2008 by the Arbor Day Foundation to honor colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals.

To be considered for the honor, NDSU met the five standards for sustainable campus forestry. The university has established a tree advisory committee, presented evidence of a campus tree-care plan, dedicated expenditures for its tree program, holds an Arbor Day observance and sponsors student service-learning projects.

“Trees not only play a vital role in the environment but also in our daily lives,” said Dan Lambe, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Having trees on college and university campuses is a great way to show a commitment to students and faculty’s overall wellbeing.”

The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and education organization with the mission to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees.

In addition to maintaining the Tree Campus USA designation for 12 years, NDSU researchers have been researching, developing and patenting new trees and shrubs with the NDSU Woody Plant Improvement Project since 1954.

The project began introducing plants in 1986. Since then, it has introduced 61 superior ornamental woody plants for production and sale and registered 41 active trademarks with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. These plants are available at garden centers regionally and nationally, in addition to commercial wholesale in three countries outside the United States: Australia, Canada and England.

Some of the most popular plant varieties produced by the Woody Plant Improvement Project can be seen throughout the NDSU campus: Northern Acclaim® thornless honeylocust is planted between the Memorial Union and A. Glenn Hill Center, and Dakota Sunspot® Potentilla shrubs border the patio on the east side of Bison court.

As a student-focused, land-grant, research university, we serve our citizens.

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