Trees do more than just look good; they filter pollution from the air, provide homes for animals, create shelter and shade for humans and help to recycle water and prevent soil loss. Oh, and they're also essential to life on Earth.
National Tree Day is 31 July, but you don't have to wait until then to plant your own tree.
To plant a tree in your own backyard, you will need to do more than just dig a hole. First, you will need to find the right tree for the area and climate, and pick the right time to plant. You can learn more from the Better Homes and Gardens website.
You can purchase saplings from any nursery. If you are still unsure about the right tree for your backyard, the nursery staff should be able to answer your questions.
Once you've got the tree home, you will need to find the right spot to place it. You should be aware of how tall the tree will grow and what the roots will be like, to ensure that it doesn't affect powerlines or underground pipes once it is fully grown.
Dig a hole that is about double the size of the root ball at the bottom of your tree and water the base. To prevent the tree from 'drowning', place a small hill of dirt in the middle of the hole so that your tree will rest above the place where the water pools. Place the tree in the hole and cover it with dirt, making sure the roots are covered entirely.
You will need to stake the tree for approximately the first year. Place two wooden stakes on either side of tree and tie the tree loosely to the stakes underneath where the branches begin.