LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Sept. 25, 2014) – Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer today urged residents and businesses to get out and plant native trees, flowers, and plants during the first annual Brightside community-wide native planting day Nov. 8.
Fischer said increasing the city’s tree canopy and plant cover is critical for many reasons. It contributes to cleaner air, helps cool the city, reduces the impact of the urban heat island effect and makes the city more attractive which helps attract new residents and business.
“It’s important to plant trees, but it’s also important to plant the right kind of trees,” Fischer said. “We’re asking residents to plant trees and plants that are native to this area and will thrive in our climate.”
Over the past several decades some harmful, non-native species have been introduced and are thriving in Louisville’s neighborhoods, parks and wooded areas, causing an imbalance that effect plant biodiversity, soil conditions, and native wildlife.The community planting day is aimed at helping combat the problem.
Fischer urged participants to register their native planting projects on the Brightside website where you can also view a list of native trees, shrubs and flowers, along with tree planting instructions.
“If everyone that plants a tree will register it on Brightside’s Tree Tracker, it will help tremendously in the city reaching its goal of planting 5,000 new trees this year,” said Erin Thompson, Louisville Metro Urban Forester. “Every native tree, shrub, flower or plant project, no matter how large or small, makes a difference to our ecosystem.”
A goal of planting 10,000 trees, set in 2011, was met late last year. A new goal for substantially increasing the city’s tree canopy will be announced after the current assessment is completed, likely in early 2015.
Those wishing to get involved in the communitywide planting by sponsoring or volunteering should contact Brightside at 502-574-2613.