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Quick Tree Facts

Businesses on tree-lined streets experience increased sales as shoppers linger longer.

Children perform better in school if they are able to spend time in green settings.

Neighbors spend more time outside and have more opportunities to meet one another in areas that have trees.

Crime rates are significantly lower in green communities.

Urban areas without trees become heat-islands.

Concetration of concrete and asphalt traps and releases heat during the day and into the night.

A well-treed community can save at least $725,000 a year in energy costs.

One tree absorbs 400 gallons of water.

One hundred trees capture 250,000 gallons of rainwater.

Trees increase a home's property value anywhere from 5-9%.

A shaded roadway's life will be extended by at least 12%.

One tree produces $625 in oxygen per year, enough for four people.

A 100 foot width of trees can reduce sound by 6-8 decibels.

Eco Kids
People for Trees recognized for distinction.
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Tree Wiz Funding Progress 0 $100,000

Florida-friendly trees, plants, and your yard: Perfect Together!

On Tuesday, April 14 from 6-7:30pm at the North Port Library, People for Trees will present a lively, free program about the best Florida-friendly tree and plant choices for your yard. Learn how in just three easy steps you can enjoy more of your property by having a yard that is more compatible with Florida's unique ecosystems by using virtually no water or fertilizers, requires far less time, energy, and money to maintain than a traditional grass lawn, and attracts wildlife. See what trees, plants, and shrubs you should avoid planting and the reasons why.
The program will include an entertaining slide show that will feature examples of local, Florida-friendly yards, a Q&A period, handouts with tree and plant lists, and a free raffle for six native trees.
Also, find out just what is being done and what can YOU do to protect our native tree canopy here in North Port.
A grassroots, non-profit group formed in North Port in 1997, People for Trees promotes the importance of protecting and maintaining our native tree canopy. Besides planting hundreds of trees locally at schools, in parks, and along roadways, for many years the group hosted an annual Tree Festival in North Port and sponsored “The Eco-Kids Club”, a monthly environmental club for children, and has organized the Tour de North Port, a fundraiser bicycle ride, for the past five years. Visit, call Alice White (941) 426-9752, or email: for more information. “Save a tree today, and we’ll all breathe a little easier!”

Take a Hike!

Take a hike along the Myakkahatchee Creek
During the EcoFest that will take place Feb. 7 & 8 on the grounds of the North Port City Hall, People for Trees will lead hikes along the beautiful Myakkahatchee Creek, long dubbed the “hidden jewel” of North Port. On Saturday, Feb. 7, hikes will take place at 10AM, 2PM, and 4PM. On Sunday, Feb. 8, there will be one hike at 11AM. Hikes will begin from the Snover Waterway near Sumter Blvd. and head south over fairly rough terrain along the creek so hikers should dress accordingly and wear appropriate footwear. Hikers should meet on the sidewalk in front of the North Port Police Station about ten minutes before the start of each hike. Each hike will take approximately one hour. Reservations are not required but intentions would be appreciated by calling Alice White at 941-426-9752. The hikes are being offered free-of-charge by People for Trees, a non-profit native tree advocacy group that began in North Port in 1997. Visit our booth at the EcoFest. “Save a tree today, and we’ll all breathe a little easier!”

Sponsors and volunteers needed for our 5th Annual Tour de North Port!

October 26 is "It's the GREEN Pumpkin!", our annual fundraiser to support our efforts to spread the word about the importance of protecting and maintaining our native tree canopy through educational programs, workshops, and tree plantings. We need sponsor support ($100/$200 levels) and volunteers to work that day. The tour is a bicycle ride through North Port over 15, 35, or 65 miles; riders choose their distance. It is NOT a race! They get breakfast and lunch, rest stops, and SAG (Support And Gear). Email

Our beautiful Tamiami Trail Commemorative Tree Walk


We began this Tree Walk in 2003.

With a lot of hard work and sweat, the Tree Walk was pruned, weeded, mowed, and mulched. A beautiful native tree can be planted for $250 which includes delivery, planting, mulching,a plaque, and maintenance. Consider a living legacy to honor someone's memory, a special occasion, or just to leave a tree on this planet! (941)426-9752.

Another successful tree planting!

Girl Scout Troop #86 added a native sweetgum tree to the Tamiami Trail Tree Walk, April 18. Way to go, girls!

Vote for North Port's Greenest Citizen!

Our "very own" Valerie Ollinger has been nominated for North Port's Green Citizen of the Year! Please go to to cast your vote for Valerie. This great lady has been with People for Trees since 1998, is a Florida Master Gardener, has been president of the Allamanda Garden Club, and I don't know anyone who is more passionate about Florida-friendly gardening! You can vote as often as you'd like- tell your friends! Thanks.

Program to feature Florida Trees & Plants!


This beautiful native sweetgum is one tree we'll discuss during our program.

Our next general meeting will be March 1, Saturday, at 11am. Join us at the Morgan Family Community Center, 6207 W. Price Blvd. in North Port as our program will focus on the best Florida-friendly tree and plant choices for your yard in this area. We have a terrific powerpoint slideshow that features photos from the area of Florida-friendly yards. We'll also have Q&A time and provide handouts with tree and plant lists, planting tips, etc. Come see what People for Trees is all about! FREE.

Cub Scout Pack #157 gets into tree planting!


Cub Scout Pack #157 and their sweetgum tree!

A very enthusiastic group of Cub Scouts added two more trees to our Tamiami Trail Commemorative Tree Walk which helped them to earn their conservation credits for a badge. A magnolia and a sweetgum will now provide shade, homes for wildlife, oxygen, and filter pollutants from the air we breathe. Thanks boys!

When someone says a tree can't be saved...

This video is amazing. It really puts things in prospective when we hear about how even just one small tree "can't be saved" on a development site.

A tree gets planted in North Port!


Debbie Stankiewicz (left) and Jill Luke with the Magnolia tree planted at our Tree Walk!

A beautiful native Magnolia tree was just added to our Tamiami Trail Tree Walk,courtesy of Jill Luke, North Port's 2012 Citizen of the Year! People for Trees began this project (located along the access road just south of North Port Blvd.) in 2004 and it remains one of our most successful! You, too, can have a tree planted. Contact Alice White @ (941)426-9752 or for the details.

Memorial Tree planted at North Port High School

People for Trees donated and planted a beautiful 25-gallon native sweetgum tree at North Port High School Saturday morning. It's a memorial tree that will be dedicated Monday, Dec. 2, @ 4PM for Joshua Hill, a student who passed away in September. Planting native trees and greening our world -it's what we do!

Thanks to Linda, Debbie, & Josh for coming out early to get the tree in the ground!

Our 4th Annual Tour de North Port was a success!

Our annual bicycle tour fundraiser was GREAT. As usual, the ones who made it so much fun were the almost 250 riders who enjoyed the routes, the homemade treats, and the friendly rest stop volunteers! All proceeds from this event help us to get closer to realizing our vision for a truly unique adventure-based eco-center, our very own "Tree Wiz". See the website page for more information about this undertaking. A BIG thanks to all those who supported this event with a sponsorship level: First, Louie’s Bicycle and The Bicycle Center for their AWESOME SAG (Support And Gear) in keeping our cyclists happy and on the road. Then, our Major Event Sponsors:Fairfield Inn & Suites/Venice,Think Global, LLC,Natural Awakenings, North Port EDC ,Treemendous Tree, Inc.,ROImedia, T’s Plus,North Port Sun,North Port Parks & Recreation. And then our wonderful T-shirt sponsors:Allamanda Garden Club,Gingerbread, Inc.,Bicycles International ,Lourdes Ramirez ,Lorenzo Whitehead,Eddie McKeithan Tree Growers, Knights Owls Kiwanis,Patriot Storage, Heron Creek Subway, Panera Bread (that great coffee!),Perkins (those terrific mini-muffins!),Acme Bicycle, North Port Democratic Club, Fitness Quest, In memory of “Curmie”,Hector N. Hernandez, MD PA. Until next year's 5th Tour, Happy SAFE riding!

Trees are ready for the Fourth!


Our N. Salford trees are ready for the Fourth!

Our beautiful street trees along N. Salford are now adorned in red, white, and blue for the Fourth. We tied ribbons and flags, and added a couple of signs. Thanks to Val and Debbie S. for helping to do this!

And we have a winner!


Art teacher Tiffany Jennings, Blake Cross, Valerie Ollinger, Lindsey Gill, Victor Korchuk

We invited the art students of teacher Tiffany Jennings at North Port High School to submit logo designs for our next Tour de North Port bicycle ride that will take place October 20, 2013. PfT member Valerie Ollinger did all the coordinating. Tenth grader Lindsey Gill received $100 for her winning design with two others coming in a very close second so we awarded them each an Honorable Mention with a cash award of $25. We'll use Lindsey's design on the tour t-shirts, flyers, brochures, etc. Way to go Lindsey!

We plant another Florida-friendly landscape project!


There will now be shade and beauty for children to enjoy as they play!

On a sunny Saturday morning, we teamed up with other volunteers to install Florida elm trees, butterfly-attracting plants, and other Florida-friendly shrubs and plants around the playground area at the Children First child-care facility at North Port High School. People for Trees donated all of the plants, materials, and supplies including two hoses and a wind-up hose carrier. This makes our THIRD Children First landscaping project since we did the same for the North Port and Venice facilities!

Cody Huntley, our Youth Board Member, honored!


Cody Huntley receives his Youth of the Year Award from Alice White, chair of People for Trees

Cody Huntley who has been on our Board of Directors for the past three years, was chosen to receive the Youth of the Year award at the Community Youth Development Ceremony held at the Sarasota Yacht Club. We nominated Cody because of his unrelenting commitment and the sense of responsibility he continually showed in fulfilling the mission of People for Trees. Cody is graduating from North Port High School June 1 and although we will miss him tree-mendously, we know great things lie ahead for him.

Our Annual Tour de North Port was GREAT!


The third Annual Tour de North Port bicycle ride was held in October.

Our now annual bicycle ride fundraiser held in October, the Tour de North Port, was a success. Close to 250 riders took to the streets of North Port to follow either a 15,35,65, and this year,even a 100-mile route! Proceeds from this event are earmarked for "Tree Wiz", our vision to create a unique, hands-on environmental discovery center. Many thanks to all the volunteers who helped and to our wonderful sponsors.

Butterfly garden at Children First in Venice completed!


A beautiful butterfly garden for the children at Children First, Venice

We installed some Florida-friendly landscaping and a butterfly garden at the Children First facility in Venice on Aug. 18. People for Trees volunteers included Valerie Ollinger, Jennifer Cohen, Linda Massey, and Rhonda DiFranco.

It ain't easy being a tree...


Street trees have it tough...

This poor sweetgum got in the way of a car full of teens during a downpour....The tree was one of the 180 we had planted along N. Salford Blvd. in the summer of 2010 during Phase II of our street tree project.

Our Children First landscape project, one year later!


We added Florida elms to what was a very barren, shadeless area for children!

We had partnered with the North Port Home Depot back in May of 2011 to install Florida-friendly plants, shrubs, and trees in several areas at the Children First facility on Pan Am Blvd. Today, all of those gardens are just thriving! Just beautiful! Check out our Photo Gallery for more photos.

Tree Planting at LaBrea Park, North Port!


Valerie Ollinger really enjoys planting trees and gets some watering help from Hank Chiminello.

On Saturday, June 23, People for Trees coordinated a tree planting project at LaBrea Park in North Port. We donated 10 beautiful native Florida Elm trees that were planted with the help of about 30 volunteers including those who represented the North Port Huskys Football team, the North Port Lions Club, and the Knight Owls Kiwanis. In addition to the elm trees, three large slash pines donated by Charlie of HomeCo. Landscaping were also planted. As is done with all of our tree plantings, we will continue to water and monitor these trees so that they will provide much needed shade and benefits in this park. See our photo gallery for more photos.

Venice High School graduation stage "green-ified" by People for Trees!


Venice High School graduation stage with greenery arrangement designed by People for Trees

The word has gotten out about the fantastic job we do in decorating high school graduation stages!

People for Trees decorate high school graduation stages!


This year we added a skirt for the NPHS graduation stage. Check it out!

For the past ten years, members of People for Trees have been providing the greenery for the North Port High School graduation stage. Well, word got out about what a GREAT job we do and this year we were asked to "greenify" the Venice High School stage as well! Thanks to D&B Nursery for loaning out their beautiful palms and plants.

Girl Scouts Plant trees at Lamarque School!


Girl Scouts planted three Florida elm trees at Lamarque Elementary School.

Girl Scout Troop #241 planted three beautiful Florida Elm trees at Lamarque Elementary School in May. They wanted to do something for the environment as part of the Girl Scout "Go Green" initiative. The trees were planted in the primary playground area and will one day provide some wonderful shade for children.

Our "Red, White,and Blue" garden looks great!


Ashleigh Thompson, Jan Lewicke, Valerie Ollinger, Marty Lewicke, and Cheryl Cook helped to install new plants at our Red, White, and Blue Garden.

Thanks to the help of some wonderful members, some additional plants were added to our patriotic "Three Cheers for the Red, White, and Blue" garden located near the North Port Library and Veterans Park, Red Pentas and Blue Plumbago. Flags were added to commemorate Memorial Day. Some of you may recall we installed this garden back in 2004 with grant funds received from the Gulf Coast Foundation of Venice.

We celebrated Florida Arbor Day!


Jonathan Albino, a North Port High School Interact Club member, had a good technique for breaking through the tough ground!

On Saturday, January 21, we planted six Florida elm trees at Kirk Park in North Port in honor of Florida's Arbor Day which is the third Friday in January. After breaking through some pretty hard ground, the rest was a piece of cake! Prior to the tree planting, we had our monthly Eco-Kids program which featured...tree-mendous tree activities and games! Every Eco-Kid got to take home a one-gallon sweetgum tree!

The second annual Tour de North Port was GREAT!


Cyclists who stopped at Little Salt Spring were treated to a tour of the site!

Our now annual fundraiser bicycle ride, the Tour de North Port, was a HUGE success! On October 23, over 200 riders took to the streets and sidewalks of North Port, with 32 signing on that morning! We served them breakfast, lunch, provided four fully-stocked rest stops and SAG support from Louie's Bicycle. It's amazing what we accomplished with a small budget and an even smaller group of volunteers. But it was the RIGHT group! Thanks to those who baked delicious goodies for desserts, manned a rest stop, prepared bagels and PB&J sandwiches, put up and took down signs, served as route monitors, and secured a sponsor or two. Members of the PfT BOD especially went that extra mile; Bonita Goldman, Valerie Ollinger, Linda Massey, Matt West, and youth member Cody Huntley. Proceeds will benefit our effort to create our very own "Tree University Eco-Center". Mark your calendars for next year's tour, Sunday,October 21!

Another great beautification project


All decked out for the 4th of July!

We recently received a grant from the Heron Creek Foundation, part of which was to purchase signs and create four areas along N. Salford Blvd. noting our street tree project that was planted in the summers of 2008 and 2009. Check out the photo!

One of our gardens that earned us a Keep Sarasota County Beautiful Award!


A beautiful addition to Lamarque Elementary School thanks to the efforts of many!

The Butterfly Garden/Native Tree Walk we installed at Lamarque Elementary School last year is looking great! We were just there again with a few Daisy Brownies who wanted to do something nice for their community!

People for Trees is recognized by Keep Sarasota County Beautiful!


Alice White accepted the award on behalf of People for Trees, and Valerie Ollinger received the "Volunteer of the Year" award!

We received an award at the Keep Sarasota County Beautiful Volunteer Recognition Awards Program on May 25 in the "Land,Sea, and Air Preservation" category for our efforts in planting hundreds of trees and a number of Florida-friendly gardens throughout North Port. A big thank you to Julie Belia from the City of North Port for nominating us!

People for Trees goes everywhere!


Students who visited the People for Trees booth made tree fact bookmarks.

We recently participated in the day-long Earth Day Celebration held at Vineland Elementary School in Englewood. Classes who visited our table learned about the many benefits of trees, especially since they were able to enjoy the shade of a beautiful tree where they were standing!

People for Trees, out and about in the community!


Oak tree we helped with for the "Girls on the Run" program at Vineland Elementary.

We recently helped to plant a tree at Vineland Elementary School in Englewood for their "Girls on the Run" 12-week program that recently concluded. And less than five days after planting the tree, it was already a home for a bird's nest!

Our 13th Annual Tree Festival was "treemendous"!


Hundreds of trees were sold during our annual tree festival!

This year's Tree Festival was fantastic! We sold hundreds of trees and people were very interested in learning about our native trees during our workshop sessions. Great food was provided by the Knight Owls Kiwanis, special sounds of the "Crystal Singing Bowls" by David Jiminez, and many wonderful vendors. A special thanks to our sponsors: D&B Nursery, Charlotte Bonsai Club, Coastal Wildlife Club, Democratic Club, Pep Johnson, Treemendous Trees,T's Plus, City of North Port, North Port Utilities. Additional support provided by: North Port Home Depot, Walmart, Allamanda Garden Club, ECKANKAR, Greater Charlotte Harbor Sierra Club, Anatoli Kossintsev, D&B Nursery. Trees are still available for sale at 3597 Froude St. for $12 each, or $10 with workshop coupon. Call for an appointment: 426-9752.

Street tree project a GREEN success!


Native elm trees doing very well along N. Salford Blvd., two years after planting!

In the summer of 2008, People for Trees partnered with the City of North Port to plant 120 native elms and sweetgums along N. Salford Blvd. The agreement included having People for Trees responsible for the watering and maintenance of the trees for two years. We are happy to report that to date we have had a 100% survival rate of these trees! All are thriving and providing shade and a sense of community for those fortunate enough to live along this stretch of road.
"I am blessed everyday as I drive down Salford enjoying the trees." Ann Ulmer, teacher at Lamarque Elementary School. In the summer of 2009, another 185 native elms, oaks, sweetgums, and magnolias where added for a total of 305 street trees that are now lining N. Salford Blvd. from Price Blvd. to Sardinia. Go for a drive and check them out!