ODNR marks 75th anniversary with Arbor Day planting

LIMA — The Ohio Department of Natural Resources marked its 75-year anniversary Wednesday with an Arbor Day tree planting at Ottawa Metro Park.

ODNR and Johnny Appleseed Park District staff, which regularly partner on conservation efforts in Allen County, spent Wednesday morning planting a young Hackberry tree by Lima Lake.

“One of the tricks to tree planting is making sure you have the right tree in the right spot,” said Stephanie Miller, coordinator for ODNR’s Western Ohio Urban Forestry Division.

“This is the perfect soil for a Hackberry.”

While the tree likely won’t reach full maturity for 30 years, Miller said it could grow to 20 feet within eight years.

ODNR is planting a tree in each of Ohio’s 88 counties to celebrate its 75th anniversary.

The agency is often associated with state parks and lakes, Miller said. Overlooked are the fish hatcheries that stock Ohio’s waterways such as Lima Lake, as well as its urban tree planting and efforts to combat invasive species, she said.

The Johnny Appleseed Park District is partnering with ODNR on a riparian restoration project at Kendrick Woods, funded by a $2 million grant from H2Ohio.