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To commemorate Arbor Day, MiraCosta College will plant 12 citrus trees, including mandarins, oranges, grapefruit, lemons, limes and kumquats on Thursday.

The planting ceremony will take place in conjunction with the weekly College Hour event at 12:30 p.m. on the college’s Oceanside Campus, located at 1 Barnard Drive, Oceanside, between the 3400 and 3500 buildings.

A citrus garden was conceived by horticulture students years ago, and will be constructed with the help of the city of Oceanside and donations from Netafim, Cal Fire, the MiraCosta College Horticulture Department, and the city of Oceanside.

“It will take a couple years for the citrus trees to begin to bear fruit,” said Megan Allison, MiraCosta College instructor and project coordinator. “Once they do, the students should be able to eat fruit straight from the trees.”

MiraCosta’s facilities department has also done a lot of preparation to create the garden, including devising ways to grow the trees as naturally as possible using natural pesticides instead of chemicals.

Arbor Day originated in Nebraska City, Nebraska, 142 years ago by Julius Sterling Morton and his wife, Caroline, both lovers of nature. The day is dedicated annually to public tree-planting in the United States.

The ceremony will include a speech from Cal Fire representatives who will present a history of Arbor Day.

For more information about the event, contact Allison at 760.795.6838.

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