GreenCars is planting up to 100,000 trees throughout 2023 across Florida, Texas, Michigan, Oregon and Pennsylvania in partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation and Lithia & Driveway (NYSE:LAD). Test drive an electric, hybrid, or fuel-efficient vehicle at any participating Lithia & Driveway store and we’ll plant a tree on your behalf.
Throughout 2023, GreenCars will plant one tree for every qualifying test drive completed at participating Lithia & Driveway stores in partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation. To get your tree planted, find a store near you and take a test drive in a qualifying electric, hybrid, or 40+ MPG fuel-efficient vehicle.
Qualifying vehicles should be marked with GreenCars rearview mirror hang tags. Mention this program to the associate hosting your test drive and we'll plant a tree on your behalf! It's that easy.
GreenCars and Lithia & Driveway have partnered with the Arbor Day Foundation to help rebuild forests in need across the United States throughout 2023. Spanning Texas, Florida, Michigan, Oregon and Pennsylvania we will plant a total of 100,000 native tree species specific to each region to help rebuild forests and support local ecosystems. A number of Lithia & Driveway stores will host local tree-planting events in their own communities; check their websites or social media for more details.
Continue reading below for more information on how we are supporting each major forest – and why these forests need our help.
In Florida, we’re supporting habitat and biodiversity with longleaf pines. The Longleaf Pine was once the dominant tree species in the South, covering more than 90 million acres from Virginia to Texas. Early settlers gradually began clearing the forests away for agriculture and lumber around 400 years ago. As they disappeared, these valuable trees were replaced with less expensive and faster-growing varieties.
Efforts are underway to restore longleaf pine forests primarily on private lands throughout the region, with tree planting planned on six different tracts of land in Florida. Longleaf pine’s natural habitat stretches across a significant amount of private land, and the landowners in this project are excited to make a difference and restore their cherished property back to its former beauty.
As the trees grow, they will reduce forest fragmentation and give a home to endangered wildlife like the red-cockaded woodpecker, indigo snake, and gopher tortoise. They’ll also reduce erosion, due to their ability to grow in sandy and mountainous areas. And, because longleaf pine is resistant to weather extremes and disease, these positive impacts will continue on for generations.
In Oregon, the Bootleg Fire broke out in southern Oregon on July 6, 2021. Before being fully contained on August 15, it burned 413,765 acres of forest, making it the third-largest fire in the history of Oregon. The fire was devastating for the trees and wildlife of Klamath Falls Basin. The basin is a hub for biodiversity, serving as one of the state’s top nesting areas for bald eagles.
Wide-scale reforestation plans are already in motion. For one landowner, that includes a plan to restore more than 70,000 acres of private forestland within the burn scar to its native state over the next several years. The return of this tree canopy will support a wide range of wildlife. Species of trees being planted include the ponderosa pine, lodgepole pine and white fir.
Along with providing a home for birds, big game, and small mammals, this project will support one of the largest fish restoration projects in U.S. history. Four dams on the Klamath River are set to be removed in the coming years, opening up 420 miles of habitat for salmon, bull trout, and the endangered Lost River sucker fish. Trees planted in the basin will greatly improve the river’s water quality and help these species thrive well into the future.
In Pennsylvania, Chesapeake Bay is the largest estuary in the United States. It stretches across six states and the District of Columbia, contains more than 100,000 rivers and streams, and supports more than 18 million people and 3,600 species of plants and animals. Unfortunately, the bay’s watersheds have become increasingly polluted over time by agricultural and urban runoff, particularly in Pennsylvania.
To help protect this natural resource, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation is leading an initiative to plant 10 million trees, including black locust, sycamore maple, silky dogwood, swamp white oak, southern arrowwood and more, along streams and rivers in Pennsylvania by 2025. Planting near these waterways will establish riparian buffers that filter sediment and pollutants, stabilize streambanks, reduce downstream flooding, regulate water temperatures, and sequester carbon. In doing so, this work will preserve the health, economy, beauty, and way of life of the entire state.
Within eastern Texas and Louisiana are stretches of land that have historically been blanketed in native shortleaf pine. Unfortunately, shortleaf pine is dwindling in not only these areas but all across its native range. This decline is due to many factors including centuries of harvesting, land use change, disease, pests, and the lack of fire (which helps this tree species flourish).
This forested area is being actively managed to maintain open pine forest conditions and restore the shortleaf pine tree canopy. The goal here is to plant shortleaf pine trees and reestablish nature’s balance, improving habitat for various migratory and resident wildlife — particularly wild turkey.
Planting efforts will also create a more resilient tree canopy for the future. Shortleaf pine does well in both drought and fire, making it an ideal tree to ensure decades of thriving biodiversity.
Together with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, we are striving to replant Michigan’s forestlands on a large scale. These forests were heavily logged in the late 1800s, and statewide conservation efforts have been focused on bringing public lands back to their natural state.
This project is replanting native stands of jack pine and red pine in state forests as well as nearby national forests. The national forest planting efforts are made possible through a Good Neighbor Authority agreement with the USDA Forest Service, allowing the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to provide critical forest management support.
As the forests mature, these new trees will provide a wide variety of ecosystem services including carbon sequestration and water filtration. But most importantly, forests across Michigan will see improved habitat for a wide variety of wildlife including deer, turkey, grouse, and — most notably — the Kirtland’s warbler. These birds have only recently been taken off the endangered species list, thanks to concerted tree planting efforts like this one. They nest in young jack pine forest stands and rely on them for survival. This work means Kirtland’s warblers, and other species will continue to thrive.
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