By Emily Barber, Marketing Manager

Planting 1 million trees sounds like an ambitious goal, but for Million Trees Miami, it’s just the right amount. As a longstanding partner, American Forests has worked with Million Trees Miami again and again to move closer to achieving 1 million trees planted by 2020 and 30 percent canopy cover for Miami-Dade County.

Bank of America volunteers; Million Trees Miami/Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department staff; American Forests staff; and Miami-Dade County District 2 Commissioner Jean Monestime celebrate the beginning of the planting.

Recently, as part of Miami Tree Week, American Forests partnered with Million Trees Miami and Bank of America to host a planting at Arcola Lakes Park, planting 75 gumbo limbo and verawood trees. Before the planting, we worked with Million Trees Miami to identify native species that would perform well in the area. We typically do this for all plantings, but it’s especially important as Miami recovers from Hurricane Irma and prepares for the continued effects of climate change.

Arcola Lakes Park is a busy spot, often filled with nearby residents and community members taking advantage of the trail that weaves through the park. In addition to health benefits, providing a wind barrier and absorbing stormwater runoff, the trees planted will provide shade and reduce temperatures so parkgoers can comfortably enjoy the space.

American Forests staff member Lindsey Putz assists Bank of America volunteers in planting one of 75 trees at Arcola Lakes Park in Miami-Dade County.

American Forests has worked with Bank of America since 2013 to increase urban tree canopy in nearly 20 cities across the country. After the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma, there was an obvious need to not only restore lost canopy, but to restore the public’s trust in trees. The Arcola Lakes Park planting kickstarted this effort and helped us begin restoring the relationship between Miami-Dade County residents and their trees.

Take a look at the video below to see highlights from our planting with Bank of America and Million Trees Miami!