International Day of Forests: In Finland, thousands of children sow tree seeds to celebrate forests

This year, the International Day of Forests is celebrated on March 21. The UN proclaimed the Day to raise awareness of the importance of forests and to encourage local efforts to plant trees, for example. The Finnish Forest Association gives 50,000 pine seeds for children to sow in honour of the day.

My Tree sowing project celebrates also the centenary of Finland’s independence in 2017.

Up to ten thousand children in day care centres, primary schools and clubs participate annually in the My Tree sowing project organized by the Finnish Forest Association.

The children flex their green thumbs to sow and grow their own pine seedlings. If every seedling survived and was planted in nature, the trees would make a pine forest of 25 hectares.

The sow-a-tree day is a way to teach children how nature works. The children look after the germinating seeds up to the germling stage, after which the seedlings can be planted in the children’s own back yard or elsewhere. They learn to water the seedlings and to ensure that they receive enough light and warmth.

The Finnish Forest Association has provided seeds for schools and day care centres since 1993. During this period, more than 250,000 children have sown more than 1.2 million pine seeds. The oldest trees are almost a quarter-century old and several metres high.

The seeds are donated by Siemen Forelia, a Finnish seed processor. The project is implemented in co-operation with the Finnish outdoor associations Suomen Latu, Metsämörriohjaajat and Finlands Svenska Idrott and is funded by the Finnish Forest Foundation.

Seeds can be ordered at (in Finnish and applicable in Finland only): Materials

Additional information: Anne Turunen, Finnish Forest Association,

International Day of Forests 2017

Read more about Finnish Forest Association & Forest Education


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