Ohio Governor Mike DeWine was on hand with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to plant the first seeds in Ohio's new Buckeye State Tree Nursery.

First seeds planted at new Buckeye State Tree Nursery

In February, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine joined Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Director Mary Mertz to plant the first seeds in Ohio’s new Buckeye State Tree Nursery. 

“The opening of the Buckeye State Tree Nursery is a huge step toward protecting and replenishing forests across Ohio,” Governor DeWine said. “Planting trees is an investment into our state’s future, and by growing the seedlings right here in the Buckeye State, we are making that future even brighter for our children and grandchildren.”

The only tree nursery of its kind in Ohio, the Buckeye State Tree Nursery will address regional shortages of suitable tree seedlings, assist with integral tree conservation projects, and invest in the future of Ohio’s forests. The nursery will be located on ODNR Division of Forestry property at the same site as the previous Zanesville Nursery, which closed in 2003. 

The nursery will focus on growing hardwood producing trees including several species of oak, hickory, black walnut, sycamore and American chestnut. 

“We are always looking for more ways to plant trees and spread their beauty here in Ohio,” Director Mertz said. “By starting the homegrown seedling process and working with our partners across the state, we’ll be able to put more conservation projects into motion and increase the quality of life for people in our communities.”

The establishment of the tree nursery was approved by the Ohio General Assembly as part of House Bill 101, which was signed by Governor DeWine in January. Operated by ODNR’s Division of Forestry, the Buckeye State Tree Nursery will allow for faster production times, extended distribution, and high-quality seedlings suited for Ohio’s environment. 

The trees planted in the nursery will take a year or two to grow large enough for distribution. Initially, nursery trees will support various ODNR conservation projects, including H2Ohio, abandoned mine land reclamation projects, and the Girl Scout Tree Promise. In time, trees from the Buckeye State Tree Nursery will be available for purchase by the public.

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