Niskayuna’s 2024 Arbor Day

The 2024 annual Niskayuna Arbor Day celebration will happen at the Niskayuna Town Hall on Saturday, April 27 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.   The celebration will start on Wednesday, April 24th, with the planting of three American Sycamore trees along Nott Street East (see discussion of the American Sycamore below). On Saturday, there will be tables highlighting ways to learn and ask questions about trees and our environment, and the annual tree seedling giveaway.  There will be tables from a variety of local organizations such as the Capital Region PRISM (native species and gardens), Environmental Clearinghouse (ECOS), Schenectady County Cornell Cooperative Extension, Friends of the Schenectady Greenhouses, the Wilton Preserve, and the Conservation Advisory Council. Additionally, the Open Door Bookstore will host a table selling books about trees, another table will exhibit assorted information about birds, and a tree expert will host a table where you can ask questions about caring for your trees. Returning from last year’s celebration will be a number of raptors from the Silent Wings Live Raptors Program. There will also be an opportunity to sign up for a forest therapy session, to occur on Sunday.

The tree seedlings available this year to take home and plant include sycamores, eastern redbuds, lilacs, dogwoods, serviceberry trees, paw paws, tulip poplars, Frasier firs, Norway spruces, arborvitaes, blackberry plants, and gooseberry plants.  Click on the link below for descriptions of each tree.  Keep in mind that the giveaway is first come, first serve and one tree giveaway is allowed per family.

Click here to read descriptions and see images of the types of trees that will be given away.

The American Sycamore Tree is one of the oldest tree species in North America, and is known as a grand, stately symbol of strength, protection, and perseverance. This tree is also known as the planetree, buttonball tree, buttonwood, and American planetree. It is recognizable by its unique peeling bark with patches of gray and white. It can reach a height of 70+ feet, with a width of 50+ feet. The name the “buttonball” tree results from the 1-inch balls that hang from the tree. These dry, hairy fruits hang in groups of 2-7 and encase small seeds that drop in the Fall season. The large maple-like leaves contribute to the absorption of carbon dioxide and water from the air which is released as oxygen back into the atmosphere. Wildlife are attracted to it as a source of food, nesting sites and shelter. The tree can grow 6 feet in one year and will soon provide plenty of shade in the right spot. Due to its majestic size, it should be planted in a large yard or piece of land, and no closer than 15 feet to any structures. The sycamore can also grow in wet areas. It can make a great street tree in the right place due to its tolerance for pollution, road salt and drought. The American Sycamore tree will add plenty of character to the landscape of Niskayuna.

The Arbor Day celebration will be held rain or shine. There will be activities for children and adults, and plenty of opportunities to learn about planting trees and keeping the tree-lined streets and properties of Niskayuna healthy.