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Sandra ClarkFun Outdoors

Mayor Madeline Rogero will join the North Hills Garden Club to open the community arboretum today (11/7) at 4 p.m. at the entrance to North Hills on Washington Pike. Sally Wilcox, president of the North Hills Garden Club, will preside and David Vandergriff, UT Urban Forestry Council, will present a TUFC certificate.

Wilcox called the neighborhood-sponsored arboretum “the first of its kind in Knoxville and one of just a few in Tennessee. It is an important partnership between the city and community to enhance Knoxville’s urban forest canopy and provide educational outdoor recreation.”

The level-1 arboretum contains hundreds of trees, located throughout the neighborhood’s boulevards and its park, Wilcox said. “With help from a city Parks and Recreation Challenge Grant, the garden club worked with the city’s urban forestry program to tag 40 trees of distinct species with interactive labels that list the tree’s common and scientific name, along with QR scan code that links to an interactive database.”

North Hills Garden Club also installed five natural stone benches on the boulevards to provide resting points for residents and visitors exploring the arboretum.

The club has enlisted a local metal artist to install the marble arboretum sign in a decorative iron frame designed and fabricated in Knoxville. The local iron shop is also making new frames for neighborhood signs throughout the arboretum.

This fall, with help from another Parks & Rec grant, the club will add 60 tree labels and 12 new plantings of tree species that are currently under-represented in the neighborhood’s boulevards.

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