Rio Rancho residents can get three free tree seedlings at a city drive-thru event Saturday.

The City of Rio Rancho is hosting the seedling giveaway from 10 a.m. to noon at City Hall, 3200 Civic Center Circle. Participants will receive three tree seedlings per household, along with planting instructions, according to a city news release.

“Planting tree seedlings helps build the city’s urban canopy, which provides shade and natural cooling, and improved quality of life,” according to the city release. “One full-grown tree generates enough oxygen to sustain two human beings.”

At the giveaway, seedlings will be prepackaged and available on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last. Proof of Rio Rancho residency is required.

Species of trees include Afghan pine, hackberry and currant.

The Afghan pine grows 40 feet tall, tolerates drought and thrives in heat, wind and poor soil, according to the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority xeriscaping webpage. The tree can’t handle temperatures below 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

According to the webpage, hackberry trees use little water and attract butterflies and songbirds.

Finally, currants are shrubs that produce flowers and berries. The golden currant listed on the water utility authority website grows 6 feet high and needs a medium amount of water, according to the site.

The giveaway Saturday is coordinated by the city’s Keep Rio Rancho Beautiful Division and Tree Steward Program, and the New Mexico Tourism Department Clean & Beautiful Program.

For more information about the trees, visit, the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority’s landscaping website.