OVER 7,000 seedlings of trees were planted Thursday as Zamboanga City joined the nationwide Arbor Day celebration.

Hordes of people coming from the different sectors of the city participated in the Arbor Day tree planting activity spearheaded by Mayor Ma. Isabelle Climaco-Salazar.

The tree planting was held at a three-hectare area at the Mayor Cesar C. Climaco Freedom Park in Mount Abong-Abong, Barangay Pasonanca.

Among the trees they planted were narra and mahogany species, according to Dr. Eduardo Bisquera, assistant city environment and natural resources officer.

Salazar encouraged all sectors to join the local government in the advocacy to save the environment through various means, including planting trees and proper waste disposal among others in light of serious threats brought about by climate change.

She cited the need to act now and to act fast to protect and preserve the environment.

Bisquera said the Arbor Day celebration advocates active participation of all sectors to undertake mass tree planting, preservation and maintenance of trees to address the impact of climate change, global warming including water and soil conservation.

After the tree planting, Salazar also led the tagging of nine "century" and three "heritage" trees in Barangays San Roque and Upper Calarian, this city.

The declared century and heritage trees were strapped with metal plates inscribed with the name of the tree, date of declaration, approximate age, registry number, and its location.

Century trees are trees identified to have lived for more than 100 years.

Heritage trees are important trees that have not yet reach 100 years old but are ecologically, historically, and culturally valuable, or belonging to rare species or near a water source.

The tagging is pursuant to City Ordinance 431, otherwise known as the Century and Heritage Tree Ordinance. (Bong Garcia)