Alabama Power business office manager Scott Exum told the commission in July that Alabama Power had a grant available for planting trees. Called the Good Roots Grant, it gives up to $1000 to help plant trees. The commission received the full amount.
Upon hearing about the grant, commission co-chair Susan Di Biase spoke with Jacksonville State University campus grounds supervisor Tyler Law who helped plan the tree spacing and design.
“We worked with Tyler at JSU and Janis Burns at parks and recreation,” said Di Biase. “Last Tuesday, we had the excavator out and people from the street department helping. Alabama Power has been very generous with us, and Tyler was able to get a special price for us from S.D. Walker Nursery Farm in Wellington. It all worked out well and I’m so excited about it. One of the bright spots is how, in the past few years, we’ve built up some wonderful community partnership between the city, JSU and Alabama Power.”
For some time, the commission has had some plans for areas that could benefit from trees. One such area was the Ladiga Trail near the Ladiga Trail Gardens, which are maintained by the Jacksonville Garden Club.
“We installed the trees in between the restored train depot and the gardens,” said Di Biase. “They made an immediate impact. If there’s anyone who hasn’t been to that area lately, they need to go by and see how pretty the gardens are.”
Di Biase noted that the first segment of the Creekside Trail, just past the gardens, has been paved.
“Every year we do a community tree planting of smaller trees, and this year we’ll be planting in that area next to the creek,” she said. “We plan to do some more improvements in that part of town that I think people will really enjoy.”
Di Biase said the crape myrtle trees recently planted are called the ball and burlap size. Eight of the trees are of the red-blooming Tonto variety; six are of the large white Natchez variety.
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