UofL named Tree Campus USA eight years running

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    LOUISVILLE, Ky. – For the eighth consecutive year, the Arbor Day Foundation has named the University of Louisville a Tree Campus USA, a status awarded to colleges and universities that invest in their campus trees.

    “Year after year, UofL continues to protect, expand and diversify our campus tree population because we see trees as vital green infrastructure for sustainable urban living,” said Justin Mog, assistant to the provost for sustainability initiatives. “Trees not only beautify our campus but also provide essential shade, windbreaks, wildlife habitat, storm water infiltration, cleaner air, nutrient cycling, mulch and, in my favorite cases, even food.”

    The Tree Campus USA award is based on care and maintenance of trees. The university first developed a care plan in 2010 for more than 2,500 trees on its 309-acre Belknap Campus.

    Trees on Belknap Campus represent more than 130 species, including many native to our region. Among them are dogwoods, tulip poplars (the Kentucky state tree), oaks, persimmons, magnolias and elms, including a rare American elm, a species devastated by Dutch elm disease in the last century.

    In 2017, UofL planted 57 trees and lost 30: 20 due to construction projects and 10 because they were dead or dying and posed a safety risk. In addition, students, faculty and staff took part in a learning project to tap campus trees to gather sap for syrup. The university is planning many public tree events for spring, including a tree giveaway on Arbor Day, April 6.

    For more information, contact Justin Mog, 502-852-8575.

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    Janet Cappiello covers the College of Business, the J.B. Speed School of Engineering, the College of Education and Human Development, the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, Sustainability Council and military initiatives for the Office of Communications and Marketing. She has more than 30 years’ experience in journalism, including working for The Associated Press and magazines such as Vegetarian Times and Sustainability: The Journal of Record. She has been at UofL since March 2014.