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Young students pitch in to help Oahu reach goal of planting 100K trees by 2025

Published: Nov. 10, 2021 at 2:23 PM HST|Updated: Nov. 10, 2021 at 2:49 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Keiki from a Honolulu public charter school received a first-hand lesson on native Hawaiian plants.

The city teamed up with students from SEEQS, or the School for Examining Essential Questions of Sustainability. Together, they planted nearly two dozen new native plants and trees like Ohia, Mao, Ilima and Pia.

They’re now taking root at the Liliuokalani Botanical Garden in Downtown Honolulu.

“It felt good. I actually really like the sensation of getting dirt under my nails. So it felt really nice and connected,” eighth grader Ayu Sumayasa said. “Since I was born here, it’s kind of nice to give that back to the land and feel like you’re doing something for it instead of taking.”

Their work comes on the heels of Hawaii’s arbor day. The city hopes giving the students this experience will lead to a long-term awareness about the environment.

“Not only are the kids getting real-world experience on how to properly care for native plants, they are learning about the importance of giving back to their community. We have seen time and time again that getting the youth involved in this process strengthens their relationships with the urban forest and helps foster an appreciation for the natural environment at a critical age,” Joshlyn Sand, Director of the Honolulu Botanical Gardens, said.

The Liliuokalani Botanical Garden is one of five botanical gardens operated by the city, but it is the only one primarily dedicated to propagating Native Hawaiian plants.

For more information on the city’s efforts to plant 100,000 trees by 2025, click here.

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