May 3, 2022
22-71

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

VSU Plants Tulip Poplar Trees for National Arbor Day

Valdosta State University’s Landscape and Grounds crew recently teamed up with Blazer Baseball and Air Force ROTC Detachment 172 students to plant three large tulip poplar trees in honor of National Arbor Day.

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VALDOSTA — Valdosta State University’s Landscape and Grounds crew recently teamed up with Blazer Baseball and Air Force ROTC Detachment 172 students to plant three large tulip poplar trees near the creek on the Rea and Lillian Steele North Campus. The National Arbor Day project was a reminder of the university’s year-round commitment to effective urban forest management.

“Each year we plant trees to replace ones lost to severe weather, lightning strikes, pine beetle infestations, or other issues,” said Monica Haynes, superintendent of Landscape and Grounds at VSU. “With this project we replaced some trees that were lost to extensive utilities-related work in the area over the past two years. The students who joined us learned a lot about the work we do and had fun digging in the dirt and doing something good for the environment and our campus.”

The tulip poplar trees were a gift from two members of the Blazer Nation family —Chris and Wendy Melody.

“My wife and I want to work to keep the tree population strong and help provide a green landscape for our grandchildren and beyond,” shared Chris Melody, who serves as director of VSU’s Adult and Military and Continued Learning Programs. “Monica and her team do an exceptional job, and I am already looking to work with them on other areas around campus that we can green up.”

Haynes said projects like this one are an opportunity for all involved to learn more about the work behind maintaining VSU’s urban forest and why those efforts are important to the university. She said it takes everyone — students, faculty, and staff — working together to maintain the distinctive beauty of the VSU campus and a healthy environment for everyone to live, learn, work, and play.  

VSU’s ongoing efforts to maintain, preserve, and protect its trees and landscaping have earned the university the Arbor Day Foundation Tree Campus USA designation 10 years in a row. Through this program, the foundation honors colleges and universities across the nation for their effective campus forest management and engages colleges and universities in conservation goals.

VSU earned its 10th Tree Campus USA recognition earlier this year.

On the Web:
https://www.valdosta.edu/administration/finance-admin/plant-ops/
https://www.arborday.org/programs/tree-campus-higher-education/
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