The Tree City USA moniker has taken firm root in Ottawa.

The Arbor Day Foundation recently announced Ottawa had been named a 2012 Tree City USA — the 14th time the community has earned the national designation.

The city also received a Tree City USA Growth Award for demonstrating environmental improvement and a higher level of tree care, according to an Arbor Day Foundation news release.

The city achieved the Tree City USA recognition by meeting the program’s four requirements: having a tree board or department, a tree-care ordinance, an annual community forestry budget of at least $2 per capita and an Arbor Day observance and proclamation, the release said.

“Everyone benefits when elected officials, volunteers and committed citizens in communities like Ottawa make smart investments in urban forests,” John Rosenow, founder and chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation, said.

The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and education organization of 1 million members, the release said. More information on the foundation and its programs can be found at, or by visiting the foundation on Facebook, Twitter or its blog.

Sacred Heart Catholic School, 426 S. Cedar St., Ottawa, was chosen as the site of the City of Ottawa’s annual Arbor Day tree planting

The school was selected for this year’s planting because Theresa Bruna, a Sacred Heart fifth-grader, won the city Tree Advisory Board’s annual Arbor Day poster contest. Bruna, the daughter of Gib and Virginia Bruna, is a student in Megan Mace’s class at Sacred Heart.