Arbor Day Celebrated in the Tennessee Valley


Tree City USA recognizing Chattanooga as a Tree City at Shepard Community Center on Arbor Day.

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- Arbor Day in the state of Tennessee is celebrated on the first Friday of March.

From Soddy-Daisy to Lookout Mountain, many in the Tennessee Valley chose today to celebrate the ways we can give back to our land.

Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly said, “As I say all the time, Chattanooga is a green city and we’re doing a lot of things within the administration to really bring that into sharper focus.”

The city of Chattanooga held their annual Arbor Day event at the Shepherd Community Center.

It was planned by the city’s Tree Commission whom Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly says he plans to expand.

The city of Chattanooga was designated for the 33-rd straight year as an Tree City by Tree City USA.

A city has to meet their four requirements to become a Tree City including having a tree commission, spending at least two dollars per capita on urban forestry, having a tree ordinance, and celebrating Arbor Day, which Chattanooga meets all criteria.

Diane Warwick of Tree City USA said, “So all of you here today are contributing to Chattanooga’s Tree City Award. If none of you were here, they wouldn’t be recognized.”

Meanwhile in Soddy-Daisy, over 60 volunteers gathered at their Veteran’s Park for their second annual Arbor Day event.

It was organized by the non-profit Keep Soddy-Daisy Beautiful in conjunction with the city of Soddy-Daisy.

Volunteers comprised of local students, Scouts, and community leaders planting dozens of trees across the park.

Jim Stewart of Keep Soddy-Daisy Beautiful said, “Last year was our first, we planted 16 trees, and we’re very encouraged by the community’s support so we’ve decided to go bigger this year, so we went from 16 trees to 35 trees this year. We’ve got twice as many volunteers, and it’s been a wonderful experience organizing this for the community.”

In addition to the tree planting, volunteers were creating a fire pit as well.

Stewart said, “We hope to expand tree planting in the future. We’ve got a great partner with the city. There’s more parks that the city owns that we’re targeting for planting in the future. One includes planting trees along Soddy Lake which is visible from Route 27 when you drive through the community, so that’s our target for next year.”

At the Reflection Riding Nature Center and Arboretum on the side of Lookout Mountain, any E-P-B customer could come and pick out two trees they could take home with them to plant for free.

This is part of the Free Tree ReLeaf program conducted by both the city of Chattanooga and E-P-B.

There were a thousand trees given away of ten different species.

Officials hope these new trees collect up to two million gallons of storm water a year easing the burden on the city’s drainage system.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News