This Earth Day {or any day of the year}, consider planting another tree in your yard.

According to Joan Honeyman of DC based Jordan Honeyman Landscape Architecture, healthy trees provide solar shade that can alleviate the effects of our blazing hot DC-area summers. Trees of all sizes decrease our carbon footprint and absorb ozone, a potent atmospheric gas. Joan also suggests tree plantings for reducing rainwater runoff and possible soil erosion, as tree roots absorb this excess water.

The Arbor Day Foundation cites countless benefits of tree planting. For example, the cooling effect of a young, healthy tree is equivalent to ten room-size air conditioners operating 20 hours daily! If you were to plant a tree on the west side of your home today, your energy savings down the line could reach up to 12%.

As an added bonus for homeowners, trees can also increase the a value of your home by 15% or more, according to Parade magazine. The Council of Tree and Landscape Appraisers estimates that a mature tree can have an appraised value of between $1,000 and $10,000. Worried about the upfront cost? One study found that homeowners get a 100% (or more!) return on the money they put into thoughtful landscaping. We’ve seen that firsthand!

When planting, the DC based Casey Tree Foundation reminds homeowners to locate and stay clear of utilities and keep proper distance between trees and existing buildings (10 feet) as well as sidewalks and patio hardscapes (3 feet).

Keep in mind that the City of Alexandria offers a Street Tree Replanting program. If a City-owned tree is removed from the area in front of your home, the City will replant that tree at no cost to you. You all you have to do is commit to regularly watering and caring for the tree during its first few years. Additionally, Casey Trees also offers a variety of low- or no-cost tree planting programs for DC residents and schools.

Check out these links for tips all year long and during the winter months.

Sue and Allison know that one reason many people like to list their homes in the spring is that their landscaping looks its best — everything turns green and the gorgeous cherry trees and the azaleas start to blossom! So contact us today if we can help you achieve your real estate goals this spring or at any time in the future.

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