We primarily focus our projects in “areas of greatest need”: those defined by the 2015 Urban Tree Canopy Assessment as low-canopy and by the 2015 Urban Heat Management Study as high-heat areas. West and south Louisville are currently our highest-priority areas.
The majority of our planting projects are conducted on privately-owned property, which comprises approximately 70% of available planting space in Jefferson County. TreesLouisville seeks to identify planting opportunities and develop partnerships with large landholders within the county (see our work with JCPS and business parks like Riverport and Eastpointe) and landowners who may not typically be involved in tree planting efforts.
We typically do not accept plant donations from private property. We purchase our trees through professional nurseries who grow trees to specific standards, and we order in large quantities, therefore it’s difficult for us to accept donations of individual trees. The majority of the trees we plant are at least 1.5” caliper, so we are unable to utilize seedlings in our projects — though we encourage you to distribute them to friends or family!
All of TreesLouisville’s overhead costs are funded by an anonymous donor – which means that all donations and other funding received goes directly toward supporting our programs!
We utilize a variety of region-appropriate species, many native, in our projects. Because our goal is canopy improvement, the majority of the trees we plant are mid-and-over-story trees, which will shade our sidewalks, intercept stormwater, filter air pollutants, and more. When developing our project designs, we take factors such as location (wet, dry), soil type (acidic, sandy, etc.), color, texture, size, and features like flowers and seeds into account.
With the exception of the seedlings we distribute for our yearly Freshman Tree Giveaway (sourced from the Kentucky State Tree Nurseries), we almost exclusively plant trees of landscape-size (approximately 1.5”-3” caliper). Our balled-and-burlapped trees are grown in family-run nurseries located in northern Kentucky and southern Indiana. We source a large number of container trees from a grower outside of Indianapolis, and occasionally we will bring in bareroot stock from Oregon.
We are always interested in exploring potential projects, particularly if they are located within one of our priority areas (west and south Louisville)! In order to ensure the long-term success of planting projects, we ask that project partners agree to the responsibility of a tree watering routine for 3 years post-planting and designate individuals within the school/organization to take on this task. Have a planting project in mind? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to discuss!
There are many ways in which you can contribute to the preservation and expansion of our tree canopy!
When selecting a tree for your yard, consider a few different questions:
Once you’ve decided upon your tree criteria, consult our Short Guide of Favorite Trees or visit a local garden center for some expert advice. You’ll want to make sure to consult the Louisville Metro Master Tree List to avoid selecting any invasive species.