Adopt-a-Tree program begins Monday

Published 8:09 pm Monday, January 9, 2006

By By Adam Prestridge
Before you know it, there will be shade trees in the front yards of Atmore homes once again.
Monday, workers with Dixon Landscaping out of Brewton will begin planting trees to replace those lost during hurricanes Ivan and Dennis as part of an Adopt-a-Tree program.
"It's very exciting knowing that these trees are about to be planted," Atmore Area Chamber of Commerce director Emilie Mims said. "It's hopefully going to build excitement in others that didn't get trees to go out and buy one and replant it. This will help us in renewing our urban forest."
The trees were made possible thanks to a $75,000 Community Relief Grant awarded by the United States Department of Agriculture. The federal funds are broken down into two components, an Adopt-a-Tree project offered to residents on a first-come-first-serve basis and a community project intended for public facilities such as schools and main thoroughfares. Each project will receive 250 trees.
"The community suffered such a great loss," Mims said. "Trees greatly add to the aesthetics of the community and the value of property. A single tree can define a neighborhood and we lost a lot of those and that sense of identity in certain communities.
"It's very important that we start to plant back," Mims continued. My hope is that we see thousands of trees planted not just 500. I hope this is just the tip of the iceberg."
Residents who were awarded the free trees, Mims urges them to follow the proper procedures that were discussed with them prior to Monday so no properties are skipped.
"It is important that residents be prepared," Mims said. "Citizens who adopted trees as part of the residential planting need to have their spots marked with the flags the Chamber provided them by Monday and also need to locate any underground utilities. If they have not picked up their flags or have misplaced their flags they need to pick them up on Monday. We also have a list of what tree each resident selected, if they forgot.

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