Customer Stories

Whether you’re an individual selecting 25 trees or a large corporation ordering thousands, you’ll love giving Gift Trees—just like all of our other happy customers.

Tangley Oaks Offers Gift Saplings at Arbor Day Themed Tasting Events

Tangley Oaks wines have been really pleased to offer Arbor Day Foundation gift saplings at their Arbor Day themed wine tastings throughout the country for two years in a row.

Tangley Oaks Wines

“Tangley Oaks donates to the Arbor Day Foundation because they share their mission of planting trees and the Gift Trees have been an effective way to both communicate the partnership to consumers and also provide something new and different. The Foundation is very flexible about delivering a great branding message for our wines and the trees are always in sound condition and very long lasting. We know that our bottle of Tangley Oaks wine might be enjoyed briefly, but that the tree will last for years and continue to remind about the goals of our company.”

“As Arbor Day approaches in 2011, I know that we’ll have many wine shops across the country looking forward to the Tangley Oaks wine tastings with Arbor Day Foundation saplings and continue the tradition of planting trees each spring.”

Aileen Sevier, Terlato Family Vineyards


DFV gives Gift Trees at Bota Box tastings

Customers who took part in an in-store demo received a free Gift Tree from Delicato Family Vineyards.

Delicato Family Vineyards

John Garaventa, Senior Brand Manager at Delicato Family Vineyards, says, "The Gift Trees have been a wonderful added bonus to our annual program with the Arbor Day Foundation.

For the second year in a row, we have made trees available to our sales force for in-store demos which are handed out to consumers who purchase a Bota Box.

It allows us to get the word out about our partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation during Earth Day as well as provide our consumers with a nice takeaway item that fits our brand’s message.

During March and April 2010, we conducted 75 demos and handed out 2,100 trees to consumers.”


Oboz’s Gift to its Customers, and the World

Customers who try on a pair of Oboz hikers or running shoes receive a free Gift Tree to take home and plant in their own yards.

Oboz Footwear Tent

The trail shoe manufacturer Oboz Footwear, based in Bozeman, Montana, is committed to doing the right thing for the environment, and their promotional efforts definitely fall under the same heading. In addition to several environmental and clean energy initiatives, Oboz periodically ships Arbor Day Foundation Gift Trees to various retailers for their “One More Tree” campaign. Customers who try on a pair of Oboz hikers or running shoes receive a free Gift Tree to take home and plant in their own yards.

Taylor Keeley, Sales & Marketing Assistant Manager at Oboz Footwear, says that tree-planting initiatives are a very important part of the company’s sustainability objectives. “We plant a tree for every pair of shoes we sell. These trees are planted in developing countries to help the communities both environmentally and economically. Since most of the folks wearing Oboz live in the U.S., they don’t get to tangibly see the effects of the tree planting. The events we put on at the stores with the Arbor Day Foundation Gift Trees allow us to give consumers the chance to plant a tree themselves and watch it grow in their own backyards.”

In the past two years, over 1,200 Gift Trees have been distributed to potential Oboz buyers. Store feedback has also been positive. “It surprises people when we offer them a tree to take home and plant for just trying on a pair of shoes. The kids especially love it.”


Notre Dame Children Love Their Homework

Students returned the next day to report where, and how, they’d planted their tree with their families.

Notre Dame School (Hermitage, PA) teacher Amy Fitzgerald’s first through fifth grade classes celebrated Arbor Day with lessons, discussion, and a tree to take home. Each student received an Arbor Day Foundation Gift Tree to take home to plant. Many students returned the next day to report where, and how, they’d planted their tree with their families.

Notre Dame School Grade 3
Notre Dame School, Hermitage, PA, grade 3.
Noter Dame School Grade 5
Notre Dame School, Hermitage, PA, grade 5.

Green is Hy-Vee’s Favorite Color

Literally and figuratively planting roots in fertile soil, Hy-Vee is giving communities 200,000 Gift Trees from the Arbor Day Foundation, ready to place in the ground.

Hy-Vee gift trees
Inside the Hero Gallery at Arbor Day Farm, dozens of staff members busily prepare Colorado Blue Spruce and Norway Spruce seedlings for Hy-Vee’s bold tree-planting initiative.

Hy-Vee Gift Trees
Packaged Gift Trees, carefully labeled with planting and care instructions for each recipient’s convenience, are conscientiously selected with that recipient’s region in mind.

Hy-Vee, the Midwestern supermarket chain, nourishes its communities in many ways.

Known for excellence in the quality of their foods throughout a seven-state region, they live their mission of helping make people’s lives easier, healthier, and happier.

But Hy-Vee is taking a commitment to "green" beyond the broccoli in their produce aisle.

The chain has already instituted a sustainability policy in their stores, intent upon reducing their environmental footprint. They are focusing on energy and resource conservation; waste reduction and recycling; store building and design; and product sourcing and packaging.

But now they’re getting their hands dirty. Literally and figuratively planting roots in fertile soil, Hy-Vee is giving communities 200,000 Gift Trees from the Arbor Day Foundation, ready to place in the ground.

Jon Wendel, the chain’s vice president of marketing, firmly believes, "Everyone has a role in protecting the environment." That’s why Hy-Vee is empowering cities and towns across the Midwest.

Community groups and more than 500 schools throughout Hy-Vee’s service region received Colorado Blue Spruce and Norway Spruce seedlings, selected for their hardiness in the Midwest, throughout September 2008.

Arbor Day Foundation chief executive John Rosenow applauds Hy-Vee’s action. "These trees will impact communities for years. Those who have recently been hit by storms and floods will feel Hy-Vee’s commitment for generations to come as they watch these trees mature."


How Gift Trees Helped Make a Birthday More Special

Family members chose to celebrate the 90th birthday of Byrle Gross in a unique way - one that will endure for generations to come.


The family’s gift to Gross is a gift of every visitor at the YMCA Trails West Camp in Scottsbluff, Neb. To mark the special occasion, they planted and distributed 90 trees in honor of Gross.

“It was unbelievable,” Gross said. “It was such a thoughtful, thoughtful surprise. This is something everybody can enjoy, and it’s a gift that will last long into the future. I can’t be happier about it.”

Credit for Gross’s unique birthday gift goes to his granddaughter, Karla Jensen of Lincoln, Neb. Jensen, a professor at Nebraska Wesleyan University, spent weeks trying to come up with a perfect present for her grandfather. A former student mentioned planting trees, and the plan blossomed from there.

Jensen contacted the Arbor Day Foundation, and purchased 89 gift trees for the celebration. Those trees will either be planted at the YMCA Trails West Camp or at the homes of family members. They purchased a 12-foot-tall cottonwood tree - "Grandpa’s tree" - from ABC Nursery in Scottsbluff that was the first tree to be planted at the camp’s new tree trail. The family planted the tree at the head of the trail.

"These trees will be a great tribute to Grandpa," Jensen said. "You can plant trees for any occasions, and it’s such a unique way to celebrate a special time. Once we started talking about planting trees, we all became inspired to do it."

All told, more than 50 trees will gradually make their home at the YMCA Trails West Camp. The seedlings will be taken care of by Jim Neuwirth of ABC Nursery until they are large enough to be transplanted along the trail.

The family tree-planting event inspired Gross. As the family was leaving the camp, Gross dropped a hint about what he would like to do for his 100th birthday.

"He told everybody to save the date on their calendars 10 years from now and we would all get together and plant more trees," Jensen said. "He said the trees we planted would provide a lot more shade then, and we would all have a good time planting even more trees."


Best Price Boxes Gives Back In Many Ways

Best Price Boxes gives a gift tree to customers who buy or sell a used box. Most boxes are used 3–4 times before they are recycled.

We chose the Arbor Day foundation because we love the mission of your company - you "Inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate Trees!" In many ways we (Best Price Boxes) are trying to do the same thing - get people to buy used boxes - and then sell them back to us - which in turn, allows us to reuse a box, on average, 3-4 times before the need to recycle it. This keeps valuable resources out of the landfills and lessens the need for new boxes. To date, we have reused and recycled more than 2,500 tons of boxes - which equals ~42,500 trees saved! Although our two companies have a different means to an end, our goals are similar.

The Gift Trees are given to our customers as a small token of our appreciation for buying - or selling us - used boxes. It’s a reminder that what they are doing is being a friend to our environment in several ways: Buying used boxes, selling us used boxes, and an opportunity to plant a tree. Our customers love this idea and many accept the Gift Trees from us. I cannot begin to tell you how many times that we have heard "What a great idea," and "I wish you were here 5 years ago." It truly gives us a sense of accomplishment knowing that in a small way we are helping these communities working towards a *Greener* tomorrow.

Rosella Yoksh, a customer at the Overland Park, KS, store, said, “Oh, I can have one? What a great idea! I have already planted Colorado Blue Spruces around the corner of my yard, but one has not made it . Oh, thank you so much!”

We hope the Arbor Day Foundation can be a big part of Best Price Boxes’ growth strategy going forward as we try and inspire more communities to reuse boxes - and plant trees!


Gift Trees at the Library

I held our first Family Time at the Library last evening. There were 20 people in attendance, and 11 children received trees to take home, plant, and nurture.

Two of the families indicated that they had no or very few trees in their yard. All of the children and parents were very excited about receiving the trees. One mother brought her 4-year-old daughter and her 8-month-old son. She took a tree for the baby so both children can have their own tree to watch as they grow. It was a very rewarding program for me, and I appreciate the Arbor Day Foundation’s contribution the special evening.

Jane Carlson, Children’s Services Librarian Indianola Public Library, Indianola, IA


Did Gift Trees help make your event more special? Tell us your experiences! We may post it here on this site or share it in one of our publications. Please email [email protected].