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Tree City Program

Visalia Preserves Oak Heritage

Enjoying and caring for oak trees has been a Visalia tradition for nearly 100 years. Our friendly neighborhoods lined with these graceful trees show the foresight of our first community leaders.

When Visalia was founded in 1852, it was located in the largest valley oak woodland in California. Nourished in the fertile soils of the Kaweah River delta, valley oaks covered a 400 - square - mile area. As Visalia's population grew, more trees were cut down for firewood and to make room for new crops. Fewer trees remained.

In the 1890s, Visalians saw the oak tree as a renewable source of community pride and identity that deserved preservation. Community leaders worked together to protect the valley oak. In 1909 they proposed that Tulare County purchase 100 acres of oak trees on Mooney Ranch and preserve the land as a park. Mooney Grove Park is still one of the largest valley oak woodlands in California.

Please visit Urban Forestry for more information regarding the tree program.

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