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Parks & Recreation

Healthy Parks, Healthy Portland

Phone: 503-823-PLAY (7529)

Fax: 503-823-6007

1120 SW Fifth Ave., Suite 1302, Portland, OR 97204

Learning Landscapes

  • City Tree Inspector helps plant trees at an event

  • New school plantings

  • Students from Jefferson High School plant trees

Learning Landscapes are a hands-on learning opportunity for youth of all ages!

The Learning Landscapes program empowers school children to plant trees at their schools with the assistance of Urban Forestry staff and volunteers. The school yard trees are identified and mapped so students and neighbors can learn about them as they grow. Developing a school arboretum will give students a hands-on learning opportunity that will stay with them for years. In addition to the environmental and aesthetic benefits of trees, students will have opportunities to learn about:

  • Tree biology
  • Tree identification
  • Environmental writing
  • Native trees
  • Watershed ecology
  • Climate change
  • Geography
  • And more!

Students will connect to their school and community by working together to improve their school grounds. In addition to watering and pruning, students will also be able to participate in ongoing projects as citizen scientists. For example, measuring tree growth rate can help to determine which trees do best in Portland's climate. Students can also design maps and signs for the trees, helping the neighborhood learn more about the arboretum.

To learn more about establishing a Learning Landscape at your school, please contact Gina Dake, Education & Outreach, at, or at 503-823-1650.

About Learning Landscapes

PP&R and School Leaders work together to create school arboretums