Those waiting in line eagerly pressed forward to pick up their trees. At the first station, Alabama Power volunteer Lee Roper demonstrated the proper depth to plant trees. Jacksonville Tree Commission member Dick Lindblom greeted visitors, passing out information sheets about the 27 species of trees being distributed and making sure everyone had a copy of the brochure “Right Tree in the Right Place.”
Master Gardeners and JSU groundskeepers staffed each set of tables, and offered helpful information about oaks and crape myrtles, pop ash and dogwoods. Attractive new signs designed by JSU landscaping and grounds supervisor Tyler Law helped visitors learn more about the size, fall color and wildlife value of the various trees.
This year’s event was especially big because it represented a partnership between the Calhoun County Beautification Board and the Jacksonville Tree Commission. Truman Norred serves on both groups, and coordinated with Board member Janet Evans to bring the event to Jacksonville. The tree saplings were generously provided by the Alabama Power “Good Roots” program and the Alabama Forestry Commission. About 3,000 trees were given away in less than three hours.
Jacksonville’s celebration of Arbor Day continues on Tuesday, Feb. 25th at 3:30 p.m. with a tree planting ceremony on the JSU campus behind the International House. The event is free and open to the public. Also today, at 2 p.m. at the Anniston Public Library, Master Gardener Sherry Blanton will be presenting a slideshow featuring some of the most remarkable trees in Calhoun County.