While National Arbor Day falls on April 27, California Arbor Week is happening now — March 7-14.

To celebrate that and to bring needed shade to Eissler Elementary, PG&E brought three trees — fruitless pear, Chinese elm and camphor — to the school and planted them with the help of the students.

“We partnered with them last year and planted three trees,” said Katie Allen, a marketing and communications representative with the energy company. “But two of the trees were vandalized and destroyed.”

Allen said the school was originally chosen because the company was looking for a school in need of shade and vegetation.

After PG&E learned that the two trees had been destroyed, it decided to continue the partnership with the school and bring in more trees.

The trees planted in 2017 were five-gallon trees, easy for the Eissler students to handle when they planted them. This year, the company went with 15-gallon trees — still small enough for the students to handle, but sturdier and more resistant to vandalism. Fences will also be added around the trees to further protect them, Allen said. 

Dozens of students helped the tree professionals do the prep work for the tree planting, putting their backs into it as they dug holes for the roughly 8-foot-tall trees. 

The trees are of slow-growing varieties, but in the not-too-distant future, the three trees, scattered around the campus, will offer cooling shade to Eissler Elementary students.