Students and staff gathered near Eagle Creek this morning to plant trees in honor of Arbor Day.
“It was a collaborative effort between the students and staff to do for Arbor Day. It was a university planting and the physical plant purchased the seedlings and the students help plant them,” Dennis Pope, horticulturalist, said.
Arbor Day is typically celebrated in April, but Georgia celebrates the holiday during the third weekend in February because the climate is the safest to plant trees, Pope said.
Today students helped plant 500 bald cypress seedlings around Eagle Creek and earlier in the week physical plant staff planted 500 pines and 250 miscellaneous hardwoods, Pope said.
“There have been Arbor Day plantings before but this is the first one we’ve done like this. We’d like to make it a regular event where we can do some tree plantings with the students but we have to progress into that,” Pope said.
Arbor Day is a celebration to plant trees, but the physical plant staff works all season long to increase the number of trees on campus.
“Here at Georgia Southern and the physical plant, we try to plant trees all fall and winter long so it’s just a continuation of our planting plan,” Pope said.
Besides honoring Arbor Day, the tree planting is significant for the health of the campus landscape and the health of students.
Pope said, “It’s helping the diversity of the creek and there’s no cypress trees in that area so we were just planting a species that would help diversify the area and to aid in natural filtration of water and help clean the air.”