Volunteers at a recent Trees Atlanta planting event. (Photo by Gregg Murphey)
Volunteers at a recent Trees Atlanta planting event. (Photo by Gregg Murphey)

By Bethany Clark
Trees Atlanta

2014 is a milestone year for local non-profit Trees Atlanta. At the end of this month’s planting season, the organization will have contributed 100,000 trees to the Atlanta’s urban forest since 1985.

On Thursday, March 27, Trees Atlanta will host a party to celebrate the milestone called the “The Root Ball” in the Greystone building at Piedmont Park. Presented by the Southeast Permanente Group, the event will feature food, a live band, a ceremonial planting of the 100,000th tree, and an award recognition of Trees Atlanta’s valued partners in the categories of individual, corporate, community partner, and volunteer. More information and tickets are available at treesatlanta.org.

Atlanta has always been nationally recognized as a city in the trees, encased as we are in such a beautiful natural urban forest. Though our urban forest began to suffer a bit in the 1970s due to drought, increasing development, and other environmental factors, over the last few decades our city continues to make our natural environment a priority. After all, our parks, trails, greenspaces, and rivers are a big part of how we enjoy life in Atlanta.

For nearly three decades, Trees Atlanta has been a community partner committed to planting trees in our neighborhoods. The 100,000 trees that we have collectively planted keep us cool in hot temperatures, improve our air quality, provide fresh oxygen, and make our communities beautiful.

Trees Atlanta is supported by thousands of volunteers, local businesses, corporate partners, and committed citizens like you, and this moment belongs to all of us. We have much to be proud of.

In reaching the 100,000 tree milestone, the Trees Atlanta community has:

  • Planted in more than 100 neighborhoods across Atlanta, improving the beauty and health of the forest, parks, and corridors of our city
  • Helped restore native botanical diversity to the city’s urban forest by planting many species of oak, maple, pines, elm, magnolia, and more
  • Enriched habitat for wildlife, birds, butterflies, and bees
  • Enhanced the Atlanta Beltline through the Atlanta BeltLine Arboretum
  • Educated thousands of men, women, and children, creating more tree advocates and stewards

Many of you have shared with us your first-hand experiences of how trees improve your communities, your health, and your quality of life.

You’ve told us that many of the trees we planted in the 1980s now provide a green canopy for enjoying your outdoor community. Imagine, as these 100,000 trees continue to grow, what a legacy this will leave for generations to come.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.

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