Our first year community education goals are to promote the preservation and expansion of the tree canopy as a civic value, to offer hands-on opportunities to improve our tree canopy, to develop the capacity of homeowners and businesses to properly care for trees, and to support public tree protection and planting efforts. Trees Knoxville also engages the energies and talents of trained community volunteers to meet with neighborhood associations to inform them about the value and care of trees.
In 2016, our newly minted board of tree advocates and professionals developed and adopted its bylaws and then filed its charter with the State of Tennessee. By the end of the year, we had accomplished the following.
By July 2016 we started making Trees Knoxville known in Knoxville and Knox County by introducing Trees Knoxville to different groups associated with our board members and to government agencies. We also reached out to tree organizations in other cities to learn more about how best to fulfill our similar missions.
In December 2016, Trees Knoxville had its first tree planting event. Sixty-five volunteers planted fifty-four street trees throughout the Habitat for Humanity Silver Leaf subdivision in East Knoxville, a development that was largely bare of trees. Partners in the Silver Leaf tree planting event included Knoxville Habitat for Humanity, the City of Knoxville urban forestry program, Keep Knoxville Beautiful, and Earthadelic, a landscaping construction firm based in Knoxville.
Also in December 2016, Trees Knoxville gave away more than 300 trees to over 150 Knoxville and Knox County residents. As folks lined up to receive their trees, they received instructions about how to plant a tree. Residents could pick two from the offered selection: shumard oak, sugar maple, yellow poplar, and redbud. The remaining 200 trees were given to county schools and other tree-planting events. Many thanks to the Knoxville Botanical Garden, Alliance for Community Trees, and CSX Foundation for giving us the opportunity to grow our community's tree canopy.
In 2016, Trees Knoxville got its advocacy feet wet as well. We submitted comments to the MPC and City Council on its proposed parking lot landscaping ordinance. Trees Knoxville also joined an amicus brief to prevent billboards along interstates.
Please visit our events page for upcoming ways to get involved.
Read our 2016 Annual Report Here.