Tree planting

The City of Norfolk was recently awarded a Nebraska EAB Recovery grant, a collaborative program of the Peter Kiewit Foundation and the Arbor Day Foundation to promote proactive tree recovery efforts with the impending effects of the emerald ash borer (EAB).

The emerald ash borer has killed tens of millions of ash trees in forests, waterways and communities.

Nebraska EAB Recovery is a new granting program that was launched to help communities across Nebraska prepare for the emerald ash borer. With the grant, the city is able to provide 250 free trees to people interested in helping diversify the tree population before the ash trees in the region are affected by emerald ash borer.

Once they are grown, the tree varieties selected for distribution will be similar in size to the ash tree. The goal is to strengthen and retain the tree canopy of both public and private trees.

At the time of pickup, the trees from Great Plains Nursery in Weston will range in size from 1- to 3-gallon containers.

The distribution will take place at Johansen Greenhouse, 2 miles west of Divots, 55063 Highway 275, Norfolk, from Saturday, April 25, through Thursday, April 30, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. each day.

Applications for a free tree are available from the program and on the city’s website.

Applications need to be submitted by Wednesday, April 22, either by mail to the Norfolk Tree Advisory Board (309 N. Fifth St., Norfolk, NE 68701) or by emailing Sheila Schukei at

This distribution will help kick off the city’s newest initiative, “2020 in 2020,” which invites “everyone” to plant one tree in the hopes of planting 2,020 trees throughout the year.

“Through proactive recovery efforts, like the Nebraska EAB Recovery program, we have the opportunity to create a more diverse population of trees in our community, helping retain the tree canopy as EAB diminishes the ash tree population,” said Stan Staab, Norfolk Tree Advisory Board chairman.

The City of Norfolk is a partner of the Arbor Day Foundation, and the free tree distribution is made possible by partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation and Peter Kiewit Foundation.

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