Press Release, Office of Governor Eric J. Holcomb:

INDIANAPOLIS-Gov. Eric J. Holcomb celebrated the historic milestone of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) planting one million trees throughout Indiana in five years by planting a tree on the Statehouse lawn this afternoon. “Getting out and exploring DNR properties is one of my favorite Hoosier pastimes,” said Gov. Holcomb. “With one million more trees now dotting Indiana’s landscape, we can preserve this love for our great outdoors for future generations of Hoosiers and continue Indiana’s important legacy of conservation.” In his 2020 State of the State Address, Gov. Holcomb directed the DNR to plant one million trees across Indiana over the next five years. The native trees were planted on state forest, state park, fish & wildlife area, and nature preserve land. The trees planted were red oak, white oak, bur, chinkapin, swamp chestnut, Shumard, pin, cherry bark oaks, and black walnut and as the trees grow, they create habitat for wildlife and form a natural carbon storage solution.

Many private sector partners worked with the DNR and the Indiana Natural Resources Foundation (INRF) to help with volunteer plantings. These partners included Clif Bar, Duke Energy, the Hardwood Forestry Fund, Huston Solar, and the White Oak Institute. In addition, Bowles Mattress’ “Sleep IN Style” mattress retail sales support the INRF’s Indiana Tree Project, a partnership through which Bowles has contributed funds to help plant 1,000 trees.

In the 1800s, much of Indiana’s forested land was cut down to support building and to open fields for farming. In 1901, the now-Indiana DNR Division of Forestry was created to protect and conserve state forests for future generations. Today, supported through the work of the DNR, the state is home to 4.8 million acres of forestland, including 160,000 acres across Indiana State Forests.

The tree Gov. Holcomb planted today, a cucumber magnolia, is native to southern Indiana. The 12-foot tree was grown on Clark State Forest. A plaque that was shown at today’s planting will later be installed next to the tree to recognize the achievement of planting one million trees over five years.