Interesting Facts About Trees

Winter Tree | Tree Facts

Trees are the longest living organisms on the planet and one of the earth's greatest natural resources. They keep our air supply clean, reduce noise pollution, improve water quality, help prevent erosion, provide food and building materials, create shade, and help make our landscapes look beautiful. Here are some more thought-provoking facts and figures about our oldest citizens and living treasures...trees!

  • Well-maintained trees and shrubs can increase property value by up to 14%.
  • Trees properly placed around buildings can reduce air conditioning needs by 30%
  • A mature tree removes almost 70 times more pollution than a newly planted tree.
  • A healthy tree can have a value of up to $10,000.
  • The shade and wind buffering provided by trees reduces annual heating and cooling costs by 2.1 billion dollars.
  • Each average-sized tree provides an estimated $7 savings in annual environmental benefits, including energy conservation and reduced pollution.
  • A single tree produces approximately 260 pounds of oxygen per year. That means two mature trees can supply enough oxygen annually to support a family of four!
  • Water originating in our national forests provide drinking water for over 3400 communities, and approximately 60 million individuals.
  • One tree can absorb as much carbon in a year as a car produces while driving 26,000 miles.
  • Over the course its life, a single tree can absorb one ton of carbon dioxide.
  • An average American uses about 750 pounds of paper every year, and 95% of homes are built using wood. That means each person uses the equivalent of one 100 foot tall, 16 inch diameter, tree every year for their paper and wood product needs.
  • About one third of the United States of America is covered by forests.
  • According to the last forest inventory, there are almost 247 billion trees over 1 inch in diameter in the U.S.
  • The average tree in an urban/city area has a life expectancy of only 8 years.
  • The tallest tree in the country is a Coast Redwood growing in northern California's Redwood National Park. It is 369 feet tall and over 2000 years old!

Sources:

  • NYC Parks Department "Tree Census," 2005-2006 (www.nycgovparks.org/trees/tree-census/2005-2006/benefits)
  • Ohio State University "Environmental Benefits Analysis of Trees for the Governor's Residence and Heritage Gardens," 2010
    (treesmatter.osu.edu/_documents/_pdfs/governorsresidence051910.pdf)
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
    (www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome) a. "Buffer Solution for Pork Production," 2002
    (nrcspad.sc.egov.usda.gov/distributioncenter/pdf.aspx?productid=150&buffersolu4porkpro)
    b. "Forest Ecosystem Study Unit for the Georgia Envirothon," 2006
    (www.fs.usda.gov/internet/fse_documents/fsm9_028556.pdf)
    c. "Carbon Storage and Accumulation in United States Forest Ecosystems," 1992
    (www.nrs.fs.fed.us/pubs/gtr/gtr_wo059.pdf)
    d. "Methods for Calculating Forest Ecosystem and Harvested Carbon with Standard Estimates for Forest Types of the United States," 2006
    (nrs.fs.fed.us/pubs/gtr/ne_gtr343.pdf)
  • U.S. Forest Service
    (www.fs.fed.us)
  • Management Information Services
    (www.misi-net.com)
  • Arbor National Mortgage
    (www.arbor.com)
  • American Forests
    (www.americanforests.org)
    a. "Calculations on CO2 Absorption"
    (www.americanforests.org/assumptions-and-sources/)
  • Council of Tree and Landscape Appraisers (The Council of Tree & Landscape Appraisers (CTLA) is an organization of tree care and landscape associations, including TCIA, the American Nursery and Landscape Association (ANLA), American Society of Consulting Arborists (ASCA), American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), PLANET, and International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). These organizations work together to compile and produce the CTLA Guide to tree and plant appraisals.)

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