Park stewards help keep city parks in good shape

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — A program is helping keep Chattanooga parks in good shape.

Cutting out the kudzu is not necesarily a fun task, but it’s work that needs to be done to keep city parks usable spaces for the public.

“It grows really quickly, it’s very quickly spreading, exotic invasive vine. It doesn’t really serve an ecological function here. It’s from Asia. It doesn’t support the wildlife in Tennessee, and there’s no checks and balances to keep it from growing really quickly. So it just smothers our native plants really, really fast,” says city landscape inspector Lyn Rutherford.

Volunteers are spending their Saturday morning taking on the job at stringers ridge.

Pulling out the plants that are creeping into the pump track.

“Some of them are folks that just like the park others are actually in the parks stewards program and they’ve adopted this park as the park they look out for,” Rutherford says.

Park Stewards go through an orientation and training to adopt a park or greenway.

A couple times a month those volunteers dedicate their time by lending a helping hand.

“They do things like litter pickup, invasive removal, which is what they’re out here doing today, so we have a couple of those folks out here today. Also doing tree plantings and mulching. We’ve also painted pavilions, just whatever needs to be done to kind of beautify our parks,” says parks outreach coordinator Anna Mathis.

It’s a program that’s an important resource in making parks enjoyable for residents to share.

For more information can be found on the City’s website.


Categories: Chattanooga, Local News

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