Can I just go to the park and plant one? Or do I have to get permission from someone? If so, who do I contact? What about abandoned lots/ grassy areas?
Also, do flowers have the same effect as trees?
Often if you want to plant a tree in a park, you will indeed first need to obtain permission. From whom depends on who maintains the park. For instance, my local park is city-maintained, and part of a larger regional district, which has the phone number and email address for the park services manager on it’s website. If you know which park in which you would like to plant the tree, see if you can find a contact person online. Alternatively, especially with the larger parks, there may be a person on-site with whom you can speak. Larger parks also often have organized days or groups for planting trees. Your local park district’s website is a great place to find out more.
Abandoned or grassy lots can be a little trickier, simply because they might be privately owned. If you are absolutely certain the lot is abandoned, then planting a tree there, assuming you have checked first to make sure you’re clear of utility lines, should be fine. There’s actually a term for be re-claiming vacant lots like this, “urban agroforestry”.
As to your last question, I shall defer to other posters, as my photosynthesis knowledge is very rusty:)
I will answer the part of your question regarding “flowers” vs trees and their respective effects:
Flowers are not restricted to the annuals and perennials most people think of when visualizing gardens. Many trees and shrubs also bloom. Not knowing exactly what is being asked, I will just comment that annuals are usually used for that blast of color people seem to crave when all else is dormant (most of the hues seen in wild meadows are from the one-time flowering of annual species). Perennials are the plants loved so well by many a gardener and require a bit more care; they “die” back each fall and return in the spring. I consider both annuals and perennials to be finishing touches. Structure, depth, texture variation, and overall interest of a landscape come from trees and shrubs. If well-chosen, correctly placed, and properly tended, they will provide year-round interest. In addition, they attract wildlife and contribute to an overall healthier landscape. So, if you have the permission needed, the right environment, and the means to do so…plant the tree and leave the annual and perennial “flowers” to the birds!
I’m not sure exactly what you mean by “do flowers have the same effect as trees,” but maybe you’re talking about the oxygen output by plants.
Plants remove carbon dioxide from the air, and replace it with fresh oxygen. Which plans provide the most oxygen? Plants release oxygen from their leaves, so the leafier the plant the better.
Want to use plants to improve the air quality inside your home? Try one of these plants, which are effective in providing oxygen: Heart-Leaf Philodendron, the Peace Lily or a Bamboo Palm.
As far as planting trees… don’t forget that, forever five answers you provide on GreenAnswers, a tree is planted in Central America. That’s definitely an easy way to help the environment! 🙂
In terms of the effects flowers and trees have, consider the time length each may live up to in a particular area. Once a young tree is planted, it will typically hold a permanent residence in that space, unless it is moved early and at a young stage where the roots will not be damaged. Deciding where trees are placed affects the future look and plantings, considering how a tree can grow for at least 20 years in one spot. However, flowers have the choice of being removed and reside in spaces temporarily.
For the abandoned lot question, keep in mind that planting a tree too close to concrete floors may interfere with root growth and the structure of the tree.
In general, when you decide to plant a tree or flowers, check if the conditions are approriate for growth, including soil texture, water requirements, and competition with other plant species. Plants with similar needs and requirements are usually grown together, which creates a nice landscape balance.
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