Tree Rx: Arbor Day Prescription to Recharge and Reconnect with Nature
To celebrate Arbor Day, tree doctors such as R.J. Laverne are prescribing a dose of “ecotherapy.” Ecotherapy is the process of growth and healing by interacting with nature. It is the new prescription for conditions such as anxiety, depression, diabetes and high blood pressure.
According to The World Health Organization, nature offers numerous benefits, including a place to relax and recharge. In fact, being in a natural setting actually makes you feel better.
In today’s fast-paced society, ecotherapy is one of the best preventative medicines. Luckily, Laverne says, trees can help improve the mind and body.
5 Ways Trees Improve Health and Wellness
- Trees save lives. Trees save more than 850 lives a year by removing air pollution. (USDA Forest Service)
- Trees help you heal faster. Patients in hospital rooms that overlooked trees had shorter stays, marginally reduced complications and needed fewer intense painkillers. (Science Magazine)
- Trees keep you young and fit. Having 10 or more trees in a city block, on average, improves health perception in ways comparable to being seven years younger. (Scientific Reports)
- Trees reduce stress. Those living in urban neighborhoods with a sizeable tree canopy suffer less from depression, anxiety and stress. (BioScience)
- Trees radiate positivity. Trees have been found to enhance mood and improve self-esteem. (Journal of Environmental Psychology)
“To reap these health and wellness benefits,” says Laverne, “we need to keep trees healthy. Just like people, trees need proactive checkups.”
Whether something prompts the appointment or it’s simply time for an annual checkup, an arborist is a tree doctor who can suggest preemptive steps to help trees live a long, healthy life.
Prescription for Healthy Trees:
- Perform a health check. Look for nutrient deficiencies, compacted soil, diseases/pests, mechanical/natural damage and soil compaction.
- Call a tree doctor. Schedule a tree check-up. Laverne says arborists will recommend “lifestyle changes” personalized for your specific trees. “Preventative medicine helps trees stay healthy so that they better withstand storms, pests and diseases,” he says. “Plus, it’s more cost-effective.”
- Implement the plan. Protect your investment and keep your trees healthy by following your arborist’s seasonal tips. Trees need you to keep an eye on them and watch for potential problems. They return the favor by providing you with health benefits for years to come.
This year, Davey tree doctors are focused on Tree Rx. Get outside and take a walk in an area filled with trees. As you’re walking, take a closer look at your trees, or better yet, schedule a tree check-up.
With more than 9,000 employees throughout North America, The Davey Tree Expert Company provides solutions for residential, utility, commercial and government clients. Rooted in research, the company’s vision is to achieve balance among people, progress and the environment. Tree experts since 1880, Davey provides diversified tree services, grounds maintenance and environmental services. Davey is one of the largest employee-owned companies in the U.S. and is headquartered in Kent, Ohio.