Neighborhood Tree Giveaway
The City's Urban Forestry staff conducted a study based on GIS data and found that residents in new neighborhoods, regardless of income, are not planting trees at a rate that is significant to increase the overall tree canopy for the city. To encourage the planting of more trees in these areas, the staff organized the Neighborhood Focused Tree Giveaway--a pilot project that brings free trees directly to residents of specific neighborhoods.
In the pilot, held November 2, 2019, Fayetteville's Urban Foresters gave away 100 trees (mostly large specimen trees) to residents of the Sloanbrooke neighborhood on the west side of the City. Sloanbrook developers were only required to plant one tree per lot for this subdivision. Prior to recent development, the area was agricultural fields and prior to that, native prairie. We have selected an area that includes 113 homes. The target goal was for 75 to 80% of the trees being planted, and 75-80% of the planted trees surviving for at least 2 years.
Trees were given away from the back of a truck within the neighborhood. Residents were able to take two trees per household. For each resident who accepted a tree, staff recorded the name, address and phone number for a follow-up in January, 2020, to see if the tree was planted. Staff will return at the end of April to see if the tree has survived the winter. Finally, staff will return in April of 2022 to measure the two-year survival rate.
Compassion Fayetteville helped with this project and provided volunteers. Compassion Fayetteville is starting a new project to re-green our communities and planet by planting trees. They will use this project to gauge the support and efforts for their first tree-planting project, slated for the spring of 2020. Riverwood Homes LLC, the neighborhood's current POA, is an additional partner and offered to plant the trees for any residents who reach out to them for help. The City's Urban Forestry Advisory Board also provided volunteers for this project.