In celebration of Earth Day, Weingarten associates in our Houston office gathered at the nearby bayou to plant trees with the help of Trees For Houston.
The afternoon started with a demonstration of how to properly plant a tree by Barry Ward, Executive Director of Trees For Houston. Some helpful tips learned included:
- First, remove the tree from the plastic container that contains the roots. Then flip the container over on the spot you wish to plant the tree and use the shovel to dig an outline around the container. Next, remove the plastic container and you now know how big of a hole to dig.
- You can use the plastic container for the displaced dirt as you dig the hole. The container of dirt is dumped over the roots after the tree is placed in the hole. This is much easier than shoveling a pile of dirt.
- When digging, most holes end up being a cone shape. This shape can be detrimental to a newly planted tree. A gap between the tree roots and the dirt is produced when the tree roots are flat on the bottom and the hole for the tree is in a shape of a cone. This gap during dry seasons will dry out the roots. During rainy seasons, water will fill the gap and can cause trunk rot, or fungal growth on the roots. To prevent this from happening, simply make sure the bottom of your hole is flat like the roots of the tree.
After the demonstration, it was announced that the tree Barry planted was named in honor of Martin Debrovner. Martin Debrovner started working at Weingarten Realty in 1968 as the Vice President of Real Estate. He served as the Vice Chairman from 1997 to 2008, when he retired. The well-respected, Martin Debrovner was one of the most influential leaders at Weingarten and directly shaped the Company we all know today. He passed away March 29, 2017.
Next, the group split into pairs to plant the remaining 34 trees. All-in-all, Weingarten associates planted ten Loblolly Pines, seven Bur Oaks, seven Cedar Elms, six Redbuds, and four Mexican Plum.
Not only are trees aesthetically pleasing, but they benefit the environment as well. Trees help combat climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide, odors, and pollutant gasses while filtering particulates out of the air. In addition, trees provide oxygen while also cooling homes and streets with their shade breaking up the urban “heat islands.”
The Weingarten associates that participated can now revel in the joy of knowing that they bettered their work community by being environmentally conscious while also paying respects to Martin Debrovner. We will watch our trees grow and flourish as we commute to work or walk along the bayou.
A special thank you to Liz Baez for organizing this event for Weingarten Realty. We are grateful for the help of Barry Ward, Randi Koenig and Katherine Bravo with Trees For Houston.