Louisville Grows provides urban forestry training to build community capacity in urban forest management and stewardship and organizes tree-planting events to assist with the reforestation of Louisville’s neighborhoods. Louisville Grows works to educate the public on the benefits of an urban forest, organizes with neighborhood coordinators to develop annual tree planting and maintenance events, and provides trees to areas in our community with low tree canopy levels. Through community engagement, citizens are trained in proper tree selection, planting and on-going maintenance. We understand that for an urban forestry program to be effective we must engage and recruit students, residents, business owners, and all members of our community to take ownership of our urban forest. Since it's creation; Louisville Grows has successfully planted over 2,100 trees with a survival rate of 90% for our plantings.
Our urban reforestation program was created in response to the declining number of urban trees within our urban core, and the increased interests of residents to organize themselves to address this concern. Urban tree mortality from invasive pests, storm damage, lack of citizen forestry skills and the absence of a developed city plan has contributed to higher pollution levels, poor stormwater management, and barren urban landscapes. Louisville Grows organizes tree planting events in neighborhoods near the urban core, where large trees can have the biggest impact as they cool streets by providing shade, purify our air, beautify our streets, and absorb and purify stormwater. We also know that trees planted on residential properties can reduce utility bills and raise the value of a property, particularly important for low-income neighborhoods that have less canopy development. We believe that informing and working in solidarity with neighborhoods and community members so that we can have a deeper impact on sustaining planted trees.
Louisville Grows works with community partners and neighborhood groups to plant trees with residents and businesses in our community. With these tree plantings, we organize training for individuals to learn how to properly plant and care for trees, and then lead a group of volunteers during a tree planting to ensure strong leadership and tree-savvy volunteers. The goal of training Citizen Foresters is to empower people who care about their neighborhood, with the tools and knowledge to make a meaningful impact by planting and ensuring the long-term viability of trees. Citizen Foresters, our trained volunteers who lead urban reforestation efforts, are an integral part of ensuring we can effectively increase the tree canopy! Since 2013, Louisville Grows has partnered with the Portland, Park Duvalle, Germantown, Shawnee, Schnitzelburg, Russell, Shelby Park, Beechmont, and California neighborhoods for tree plantings.
5 Steps of Tree Plantings
1. Identify the neighborhood based on initial community interest and data from the Urban Tree Canopy Assessment
2. Partner with community organizations and key stakeholders
3. Canvas neighborhood to identify “treecipients”
4. Citizen Forester Training for community representatives
5. Planting day with volunteers
To learn more about Louisville Grows and our urban forestry program find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. Or check out our website at louisvillegrows.org