Secrest Arboretum
Secrest Arboretum
Learn - Explore - Wonder - Connect
Learn - Explore - Wonder - Connect

Support Tree Research

Why Trees Matter… Trees have a powerful impact on outdoor space and in human well-being. Trees draw upon our senses as a natural resource, while scenic beauty and trees add value to our landscapes through the environmental services they provide. Urban parks and greenways, academic, business and industrial campuses and residential gardens are corridors linking up to the natural world and enhancing the whole ecosystem. Why do trees matter in your life?

The Why Trees Matter Program is one of Ohio State University Extension’s six Signature Programs. It is an interdisciplinary program of the University that focuses on the economic, environmental and social benefits of trees and community forests. Using U.S. Forest Service models, it quantifies the sustainable environmental services trees provide, such as storm-water remediation, air quality benefits, energy savings, and carbon sequestration. For example, the annual value of a 12 inch diameter silver linden is $98.

Why Trees Matter includes applied research plots at over 140 sites throughout Ohio communities (Ohio Street Tree Evaluation Program), tree research evaluation and extension (TREE) plots at OARDC’s Secrest Arboretum, OSUE Master Gardener 'Tree Specialist' volunteers in Ohio counties, and a diverse array of community development programs around the state.

Signature Tree Program… is one of the components of the Why Trees Matter Program in cooperation with the Secrest Arboretum of the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center. Initiated on March 11-12, 2009 in Wooster, Ohio, by OSU President E. Gordon Gee, this program is intended to increase awareness of the importance of trees for sustainable communities and to raise money for tree research at The Ohio State University. Features of the Signature Tree Program include the following:

    • Three tree selections offered for sale each year as Signature Trees. For 2009-2010, these are Silver Linden, Scarlet Buckeye, and Pagoda Dogwood. Cost is $30.00 ea.

    • Each tree sold in 2009-2010 will include President E. Gordon Gee’s signature, along with a statement of “why trees matter” to President Gee.

    • Each tree sale will also include an explanation of the environmental services trees provide, based on the science-based i-Tree model developed by the U.S. Forest Service and the Ohio-based Davey Tree Company, the largest tree care company in the world. Each tree will also have a tree care tag with proper planting and care information.

  • Signature Trees will be available for sale at selected tree planting programs and Secrest Arboretum and other OSU horticulture programs throughout the year, as well as, Ohio counties, OSUE 4-H camps, and other events. Proceeds will be placed in an OSU Development Account for tree research at OSU.
Please support of tree research at The Ohio State University, through the purchase of Signature Trees. Let Signature Trees be a symbol of 'Why Trees Matter' in your life. Contact Ken Cochran Joe Cochran at