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1,000 free trees available to Rhode Island residents this autumn

Christian Fernsby |
The Department of Environmental Management (DEM), in partnership with the RI Tree Council, RI Nursery and Landscape Association, and the Arbor Day Foundation, is providing 1,000 free trees to Rhode Island residents this autumn.

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Now in its 13th season, the program helps Rhode Islanders beautify their yards, save energy, and lower their utility bills by strategically planting trees on their property.

"Planting a tree in the right place can improve air quality, sequester carbon, and help manage stormwater runoff," said DEM Agriculture and Forestry Chief Ken Ayars.

"It's a terrific way for Rhode Islanders to reduce their energy costs today and in the years to come, and a tangible way to stand up to climate change. We're especially pleased to offer free trees now, when many of us are spending more time in our backyards because of the pandemic."

Planting the right tree in the right place is the key to maximizing the energy-saving benefits that trees provide. When planted properly, a single tree can save a homeowner money on energy costs by shading their home in the summer and blocking cold winds in the winter.

Additional benefits include improved air quality, reducing storm-water runoff, increasing biodiversity, and beautifying one's surroundings.

Registration opens on September 9. Sign up at and map your house by using the interactive mapping tool. Select the right tree by choosing from the list of available trees. Reserve your tree and select your pick-up location.

The free trees will be approximately 4-6 feet tall and in 3-gallon containers. These trees will fit in most cars for transportation to your home. All program participants must be Rhode Island residents and pre-register online to reserve their free tree.