Cities grow Arbor Day tree giveways
by Michelle Babcock
February 20, 2014 04:00 AM | 2375 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Two Cherokee cities are planting a greener future, with events in Canton and Woodstock set to give away nearly 2,000 free seedlings Friday.

In celebration of national Arbor Day on Friday, the cities of Canton and Woodstock will each have seedlings available for free.

The Canton Tree Commission will have more than a thousand seedlings to give away to residents and visitors alike.

Pat Stewart, member of the Canton Tree Commission, said the nearly two-decade-old event has always been popular for the city.

“We have about 1,500 different trees,” Stewart said. “We give those to anybody, not just residents, but people who come by. If they want to plant a tree, we’ll give them several seedlings. Some of them are very nice, even 5 feet tall.”

Canton will give away different seedling varieties at Cannon Park downtown from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., including dogwood, eastern redbud, bald cypress and crabapple.

The event in downtown Canton will also have a variety of other plants available for sale at discounted prices, including potted shrubs, maple and fruit trees.

“We also work with Buck Jones Nursery, and we have about 43 types of plants that grow good in this area, like blueberry, blackberry, fig, apple, pear, and we offer those for sale at really good prices. We make a little money, and we put that money back into city beautification,” Stewart said.

The Canton Tree Commission has used previous years’ Arbor Day sales funds to put trees and other plants off Interstate 575 exits and other areas within Canton city limits.

“What we don’t give away, we give to different schools and organizations if they’re willing to plant them,” she said.

Woodstock will celebrate Arbor Day by giving away about 800 tree seedlings, said Kyle Bennett, Woodstock director of tourism and visitors center operations.

“It’s really popular,” Bennett said. “It’s one of our biggest attendance days of the entire year.”

Woodstock has multiple seedling pickup locations where people can get the trees from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Bennett said the Woodstock Visitors Center at Dean’s Store is usually the most popular location on Arbor Day, at 8588 Main St.

“A lot of times we have kids come in with their parents and they let the kids pick out the tree they want to plant, so it’s really kind of a family experience,” Bennett said. “It’s a really, wildly popular event.”

Woodstock will give away seedling varieties including dogwood, crape myrtle, nuttal oak and red maple.

“With the tree, they can also get a little information packet with info on how to properly plant and water the tree,” he said.

People can also pick up trees at the Woodstock Senior Center on Arnold Mill Road, the City Hall Annex on Highway 92, or Woodstock Magnolia Hall on Arnold Mill Road.

The city of Ball Ground will also celebrate Arbor Day on Friday, commemorating the event with a tree planting in City Park at 10 a.m. The public is invited to attend the event.

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