National Tree Day, 2024

Planet Ark’s National Tree Day 2024 dates have been announced. It’s a call to action for all Australians to get their hands dirty and give back to the community.

The hugely successful  celebration of Schools Tree Day and National Tree Day are scheduled for the last Friday and Sunday in July, so in 2024 the dates will be:
* School’s Tree Day – Friday, July 26, and
* National Tree Day – Sunday 28th July.

Schools Tree Day is a great way to inspire students to learn about the local environment while playing an active role in their community. Activities range from planting bush-tucker gardens, through to building habitat for native wildlife, nature play, and school competitions.

Download the Schools how-to guide from The guide offers a wide range of activities, event ideas and lesson plans that have been developed specifically for Australian schools.

National Tree Day is Australia’s largest community tree-planting and nature-care event. On the day around 300,000 people volunteer to engage in environmental activities that educate Australians about the world around them.

Since 1996, National Tree Day has seen Australian communities plant almost 26 million trees.


In 1594, the mayor of the Spanish village of Mondoedo hosted the world’s first documented arbor plantation festival.

In 1805, a priest named Don Juan Abern Samtrés in Villanueva de la Sierra recognised the importance of trees for health, cleanliness, decoration, nature, environment, and customs. He decided to plant trees on Carnival Tuesday to make it more joyful, which is now known as Arbor Day.

The celebration began with a Mass and lasted three days. Following the Mass, Samtrés, accompanied by priests, instructors, and a large crowd of neighbors, planted the first tree — a poplar — in the Valley of the Ejido. There was a feast and dancing later. Samtrés wrote a manifesto in defense of trees, which he distributed to nearby towns to foster love and respect for the environment and encourage them to plant trees in their communities.

In 1872, the first American Arbor Day was celebrated in Nebraska. In 1883, Birdsey Northrop of Connecticut visited Japan and delivered his Arbor Day and Village Improvement message, and in the same year, the American Forestry Association made Northrop the Chairman of the committee to campaign for Arbor Day nationwide. He also shared Arbor Day with Australia, Canada, and Europe.

Arbor Day was first celebrated in Australia on June 20, 1889. Many states in Australia have Arbor Day, although Victoria has an Arbor Week, which was suggested by Premier Rupert Hamer in the 1980s. The country decided to take it a step further by establishing National Tree Day in 1996, and since then, the program has seen communities plant almost 26 million trees.

In 2019, the Planet Ark Environmental Foundation created ‘The Seedling Bank’ to provide financial support to schools and community groups where seedlings are needed the most.

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