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Trees being given away in Indian River County 3 times a week

'Native trees are beneficial for butterflies, and bugs and birds,' Donna Halleran says
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Posted at 8:11 PM, Apr 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-06 22:39:01-04

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY, Fla. — Pelican Island Audubon Society in Indian River County is giving away native trees, completely free, three times a week.

Every Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., you can get as many trees as you'd like, and they’ll even help you figure out what’s best for where you live.

The trees are native, and that makes a big difference as to why this is a powerful initiative.

WPTV spoke to their director, Donna Halleran.

"Native trees are beneficial for butterflies, and bugs and birds," she said. "They need native plants in order to survive in the environment. If there's a lot of exotics, who are taking over some of our native plants, then our birds don’t have enough to eat."

The organization also works with local schools to plant native trees and Halleran said that actually helps kids get better grades. She said just a few minutes of being outdoors before a big test or assignment, they’re more likely to get better grades.

WPTV First Alert Meteorologist Kate Wentzel said native trees are also good for the environment, from a weather standpoint.

"It's really important to plant trees that are native to South Florida because they are the best equipped to handle all our unique weather conditions down here," she said. "Drought, which we're in right now, or rainy season when we can get up to 10 inches of rain."