Watertown High’s Environmental Club strives to replenish trees in town

Saplings ordered by March 10 will be planted April 10 and only cost $5


Raider Times photo / Wikimedia Commons

The Eastern redbud is one of the trees available through the Tree-Plenish event being run by Watertown High’s environmental Club.

Elena Kiani, Raider Times staff

The Watertown High Environmental Club is involved in Tree-Plenish, an effort to plant trees in our community in order to balance out the paper we use at the WHS.

Tree-Plenish is a student led national non-profit which plants as many trees as possible in people’s backyards. The organization was founded in 2019 by two high school seniors with a goal to do their part in protecting the environment. 

Students in the WHS environmental club, which is led by science teacher Jennifer MacDonald, have been volunteering their hours on the project. According to the WHS Tree-plenish website, “donate $5 a tree, and volunteers will come and plant it in your yard on April 10th!”

According to senior Cooper Petrie, the group will be planting river birch and Eastern redbud trees this year.

“One of them is a pretty big shade tree, it’s good to have in a big yard and then the Eastern redbud is a little bit more smaller kind of like a dogwood, but it has a really pretty bloom,” he said.

Saplings can be ordered through March 10, and all of the the trees will be planted April 10. 

When you buy the tree, you have the opportunity to either pick it up and plant the tree yourself or have the Environmental Club plant it for you in your yard. According to WHS senior Leyla Mandel, the newfound owner of the sapling will get a manual on how to take care of it. 

The Environmental Club is also asking for volunteers for that one day they plant the trees.

“We could use all the volunteers available just because it’s going to take a lot of time and a lot of people to plant all of the saplings,” Cooper said.

Leyla talked about what motivated her to take part.

“It’s a great thing to do especially during a pandemic when it’s not like we can do a ton of other things,” she said. “Most of it can be done online and it provides a great opportunity for us to come together on one day and plant a lot of trees and Watertown definitely needs more trees, always.”

Said Cooper, “The end result … when we actually get all the trees planted and come back five or seven years later and actually see those trees planted I think that’s a pretty rewarding feeling.”

The goal is to plant 150 trees to replace 1.2 million sheets of paper. That is a lot of paper! They have not reached that goal yet, but they are optimistic and on track to success.

For more information, or to order a sapling, go to the WHS Tree-Plenish site HERE.