Love Louisville Trees is the neighborhood-based urban reforestation program of Louisville Grows.
Louisville Grows works with community partners and neighborhood groups to plant trees with residents and businesses in our community. The goal of training Citizen Foresters is to empower people who care about their neighborhood, district, or city with the tools and knowledge to make a meaningful impact by planting and ensuring the long-term viability of trees. Citizen Foresters, our trained volunteers who lead urban reforestation efforts, are an integral part of ensuring we can effectively increase the tree canopy! Since 2009, Louisville Grows has partnered with the Portland, Germantown, Shawnee, Schnitzelburg, Russell, Shelby Park, Beechmont, and California neighborhoods for tree plantings.
Love Louisville Trees
Love Louisville Trees (LLT) provides urban forestry training to build community capacity in urban forest management and stewardship and organizes tree-planting events to assist with the reforestation of Louisville’s neighborhoods. LLT works to educate the public on the benefits of an urban forest, organizes with neighborhood coordinators to develop annual tree planting and maintenance events, and provides trees to areas in our community with low tree canopy levels. Through community engagement, citizens are trained in proper tree selection, planting and on-going maintenance. We understand that for an urban forestry program to be effective we must engage and recruit students, residents, business owners, and all members of our community to take ownership of our urban forest.
5 Steps of Tree Plantings
1. Identify the neighborhood based off initial community interest and data from the Urban Tree Canopy Assessment
2. Partner with community organizations and key stakeholders
3. Canvas neighborhood to identify “treecipients”
4. Citizen Forester Training for community representatives
5. Planting day with volunteers
The LLT Program was created in response to recent research demonstrating that not only does Louisville have one of the fastest rising heat indices in the USA, but also has a significantly lower level of tree coverage compared to similar cities. Urban tree mortality from invasive pests, storm damage, lack of citizen forestry skills and the absence of a developed city plan has contributed to higher pollution levels, poor storm water management, and barren urban landscapes. LLT organizes tree planting events in neighborhoods near the urban core, where large trees can have the biggest impact as they cool streets by providing shade, purify our air, beautify our streets, and absorb and purify storm water. We also know that trees planted on residential properties can reduce utility bills and raise the value of property, particularly important with low-income neighborhoods that have less canopy development.