How to run a National Tree Day planting in your community - National Tree Day Blog

How to run a National Tree Day planting in your community

Join thousands of others and become a National Tree Day site coordinator this year!

With National Tree Day 2022 fast approaching (Sunday 31st July), you might be wondering how you and your community can get involved. Whether it’s your first time or you’re a seasoned planting professional, we are here to provide a few tips to help you plan and organise your own event. 

Why get involved?

Thousands of National Tree Day plantings are held each year. By joining in and running your own planting, you’ll be part of Australia’s largest nature care event and contribute to some pretty awesome and long-lasting environmental benefits. 

Each National Tree Day, plantings and regenerative activities are held by communities across Australia. This means that in a single weekend, collectively, the Tree Day community has a huge positive environmental impact. 

Community plantings provide habitat restoration, improve local biodiversity, assist with soil stabilisation and help to ‘green’ our urban spaces. On top of the environmental benefits, National Tree Day plantings help bring the local community together and foster a sense of connection and common purpose, something we are all craving after our recent covid-induced isolation.  

Meet Winnie and Daniela from The Wilderness Society who recently ran a National Tree Day event 

Winnie and Daniela, along with the rest of the Wilderness Society’s Sydney East Movement 4 Life Group, held a successful community tree planting earlier this year, assisted by their local council (Randwick City Council), a local nursery (Indigigrow), and Planet Ark’s Seedling Bank

Daniela (centre), the group's co-leader, with plants funded by Planet Ark's Seedling Bank

Daniela (centre), the group's co-leader, with plants funded by Planet Ark's Seedling Bank

With the help of around 100 volunteers, the team planted 1,000 seedlings (including 150 trees and 850 shrubs and grasses) in a beachside area adjacent to critically endangered Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub. They hope the planting will provide the local wildlife reliant on this vegetation type with additional suitable habitat and food. 

Winnie says the most rewarding part was “seeing so many people wanting to get involved and get their hands dirty and being able to engage with our local community. [The team] had a lot of engaging conversations on the value of nature with like-minded people. It is also deeply recharging for us to be able to engage in planting and providing for nature after months of COVID restrictions.” 

Tips for running a planting event

Below we outline a few simple tips to help you hold a successful community planting event this National Tree Day, like Winnie and Daniela. 

Choosing a planting site 

Perhaps the trickiest part of planning your own event is to identify an appropriate planting site. If you don’t have your own private land to plant on, you should contact your local council to see if they have a patch of public land appropriate for your community planting. Your local Bushcare or Environment Officer are likely your best point of contact. It is also important to think about future site maintenance needed to maximise seedling survival, including watering and weeding, which the council may be able to assist with.  At this point, you could also get in touch with your local Landcare or Bush Regeneration group, to see if they are interested in helping you run your planting.   Ultimately, you must be sure to have permission from the landowner before carrying out your planting.   

Selecting your plants 

Once you’ve found an appropriate planting site, you’ll need to start thinking about sourcing seedlings for the day. Again, your local council is a great place to start. If your local council has a community nursery, you may like to take a trip there. Community nurseries often grow seedlings from local seed and the staff will have a wealth of knowledge to help you with your plant selection.  

If your local council does not have a community nursery, you might like to contact your local Bushcare Officer (or equivalent) to seek advice.  

As a general rule, you should choose local plant species and go for a mix of growth forms (including trees, shrubs and ground covers), where possible. This will ensure you select plants appropriate for your site and climate and create a vegetation structure which creates complex habitat and is more likely to encourage native wildlife. 

Extra support 

Many local councils support community Tree Day plantings. Check with your local council to see if they offer free seedlings for community plantingsor are happy to provide other logistical support on the day. 

Community groups can also apply for funding to purchase seedlings via Planet Ark's Seedling Bank. The current round of funding closes Friday 27th May, so be sure to register your planting before then. You can apply for Seedling Bank funding as part of the registration process via the National Tree Day website (see below). 

Spreading the word  

Once you’ve settled on your planting site, date and time, you can register your planting via the National Tree Day website. If you don’t have one already, you will first need to create a Tree Day profile here. Then, once you are logged in, you can register your 2022 planting event by clicking the green ‘Register An Event’ button.  

Registering your event will ensure your planting is included in the national tally and, if you register your planting as a public event, volunteers can RSVP to join your event via the Find a Site page on the National Tree Day website. You will also be covered by our Public Liability insurance. 

When logged into your Tree Day profile, you have access to all our wonderful Tree Day resources and promotional materials, including How to Guides, promotional posters and participation certificates. 

Other ways to get involved

Whilst this time we’ve focussed on providing tips for hosting a community planting, there are many other ways to get involved in National Tree Day. 

Schools Tree Day 2022 is Friday 29th July. If you’re holding a Tree Day planting at your school, be sure to register via the National Tree Day website. Schools are also eligible to apply for funding via The Seedling Bank, so be sure to register before Friday 27th May. If your school is unable to hold a planting this year, you can still celebrate National Tree Day with some of our activity sheets and lesson plans. Be sure to check out our Tree Day Schools Competition, too. 

If you’re unable to run your own community planting this year, you can join a public planting near you. As well as getting your hands dirty, you might pick up some additional tips for holding your own planting in the future. You can search for public plantings near you here.  

If you need further assistance to register a planting event or have any questions about how you can get involved in National Tree Day, feel free to reach out to us on 1300 88 5000or via 

Here’s to making National Tree Day 2022 our best one yet. Happy planting, wonderful Tree Day Community!  

Claire Laws

Claire joined the Planet Ark team in 2021. With a background in Environmental Science and a Masters in Environmental Law and Sustainable Development, Claire is keen to build on her previous work in ecological research and be part of Planet Ark's actions-based approach to environmental protection.