Nebraska City, Neb. -- The Lied Foundation Trust has announced a $1.725 million challenge grant for The National Arbor Day Foundation to build an educational greenhouse at Arbor Day Farm in Nebraska City. Under the terms of the challenge grant, the Arbor Day Foundation must raise the additional $285,000 needed to complete the $2.01 million project.
The three-building complex, which will be known as the Lied Greenhouse, will include an educational pavilion, the greenhouse proper, and the headhouse operational building.
Goals for the Lied Greenhouse over the next two decades are to produce 25 million trees for planting across the country, and to educate an estimated 2 million visitors: families and schoolchildren from the region, and national participants in Lied Conference Center events.
"We're very grateful to the Lied Foundation for their ongoing commitment to our tree-planting mission," John Rosenow, president of The National Arbor Day Foundation, said. "Christina Hixson, its trustee, has shown great vision in making it possible for the Arbor Day Foundation to launch new initiatives with national impact to foster improved tree planting and care."
"The Lied Greenhouse will make it possible for the Arbor Day Foundation to engage many more young people, both in the region and across America, in the life-changing activity of planting trees," Rosenow added. "The millions of trees grown in the Lied Greenhouse will be special 'tubeling' trees grown and shipped with soil on the roots. This is the same process used for growing resilient trees for reforestation projects in remote mountain areas where follow-up care often isn't possible, so the trees will be well suited for planting by first-time tree planters. Supporting volunteer tree-planting projects, many involving young people, will be a priority use of these trees."
"The National Arbor Day Foundation continues to work hard to reach out to people of all ages and all walks of life, and provide them the positive experience of planting trees," Christina Hixson,
Lied Foundation Trustee, said. "I'm pleased that the Lied Foundation Trust can make this commitment to a better future, both by educating young people and by bringing about the planting of millions of trees."
"The Lied Greenhouse with its educational pavilion will be a wonderful addition to the educational experiences that we provide to our visitors here at Arbor Day Farm," Chris Aden, Arbor Day Farm General Manager, said. "And some of the trees grown in the greenhouse will be propagated from the seeds and nuts of trees now growing at
Arbor Day Farm, including our hybrid hazelnuts. We look forward to our visitors being able to take home a very special memento of their experience here -- a tree from the birthplace of Arbor Day."
Rosenow said that fundraising is now underway to raise the required match and it is hoped that construction can begin next summer with a scheduled grand opening of Arbor Day, 2002.