The charming Southern town of Marietta, Georgia continues to become more attractive. Attention to natural beauty is always the focus. What could be a better beautification program, than the planting of trees on main thoroughfares around town? This is the concept, and Marietta has received recognition for it, too.
The National Arbor Day Foundation named Marietta a Tree City USA community to honor the city’s commitment to community forestry. It is the twenty-fifth year Marietta has received the national recognition.
Marietta met four standards to become a Tree City USA community:
- Tree board or department
- Tree care ordinance
- Comprehensive community forestry program
- Arbor Day observance
“Marietta is the third oldest Tree City in Georgia,” Joe Burgess of the Georgia Forestry Commission said.
The city is planting 500 trees this year as part of a multi-faceted program to preserve and replant trees in the city for future generations and beautify the gateways leading into the city.
The city began the planting project in February 2009 as phase one of a tree master plan the city and community developed two years ago for greening and beautifying the major corridors coming into Marietta. More than 265 trees have been planted in areas that haven’t had adequate greenery along corridors in the past including North Marietta Parkway across from Marietta Power and Water; Cole Street at North Marietta Parkway; Tower Road from James Street to Kennesaw Avenue; South Marietta Parkway from Alexander Street to Atlanta Street; Atlanta Road from South Cobb Drive to South Marietta Parkway.
The second phase, also underway in 2009, includes replacing trees where there are already established trees, like on Church and Cherokee streets and Kennesaw and Whitlock avenues, to ensure a great tree canopy when the current trees reach the end of their life span. Tree plantings are underway along the North and South Loops as well as along Church and Cherokee streets.
More than 50 trees were planted at schools and other public venues to celebrate Arbor Day in Marietta.
Trees help clean the air, conserve soil and water, and regulate temperature. “We value trees in the community, the environmental benefits trees give and the aesthetic improvements trees make to our community,” city manager Bill Bruton said. “The city is pleased to receive the award again,” Bruton said. “Marietta’s tree canopy adds to the city’s character and makes Marietta a more livable community.”
“Marietta’s dedication to tree coverage and protection has been exemplary over the past quarter of a century,” Keep Marietta Beautiful executive director Joan Ellars said. “The Keep Marietta Beautiful program and Marietta Tree Keepers are dedicated to maintaining the health and viability of our Marietta tree silhouette,” she said. “Marietta has many educational programs and tree plantings with children to encourage ownership of the greenscape in Marietta.”
The National Arbor Day Foundation sponsors the Tree City USA program in cooperation with the National Association of State Foresters and the USDA Forest Service.
Author:Anne Ortiz (Maximum One Realty Greater Atlanta)