ReTree Shively’s mini-reforestation effort is unprecedented in the 40216 zip code with the initial mission to plant 200 trees in 2 of Shively’s parks then expand to plant 500-1000 trees along Crum’s Lane. The mother-daughter founders of ReTree Shively, Colleen and Cayley Crum have worked with dozens of professionals, politicians, community leaders, businesses, residents and family members. ReTree Shively has raised over $12,000 to date and planted over 115 trees, including 30 native tree species from 5 regional nurseries since it’s foundation on Valentines Day 2013.
Oversight and support for ReTree Shively started with the Louisville Tree Commission assigning neighborhood arborist Mike Hayman to our project and continued with Louisville Metro’s Urban Forester Erin Thompson. Since then we have gained official ties to four (4) agencies with the City of Shively, two (2) agencies and councils within the City of Louisville and four (4) representatives within the state of Kentucky. Presenting ReTree Shively to sustainability leaders like the KY Environmental Quality Commission and Louisville Metro Council’s Sustainability Committee helped eventually led to a matching grant relationship with Brightside.
ReTree Shively has been humbled by recognition in the Louisville Urban Tree Canopy Assessment (page 75), two (2) Courier Journal articles and on WHAS-11 televised news and online print. Last season Cayley received two (2) environmental youth awards and hosted volunteer donors from several states and Canada.
Thriving from this type of encouragement we have secured financial support from the City of Shively, it’s various departments, council members, local tree enthusiast and dozens of area businesses, relatives and friends. 100% of the money we raise pays for trees with the city sponsoring cost and labor for the pick-up, delivery, planting, mulch, watering and maintenance.
Natural hazards and a lack of planting have taken their toll during Shively’s 75 years as a city so the city leaders take the task of maintaining these trees quite seriously. This project is in line with long range planning projects like the Louisville Urban Tree Canopy Assessment and the Dixie Highway Corridor Master Plan because we work toward curbing the tremendous deficit our area is experiencing in tree canopy.
ReTree Shively understands the value each trees brings for our people, planet and prosperity. We are decreasing our city’s heat index, improving our air quality and beautifying two (2) of our beloved parks. The connectivity and education that is occurring as a result of our efforts allows us to teach about how trees improve temperature reduction; carbon dioxide absorption; water absorption; soil erosion prevention; pollinator habitat; mental health improvement; property value impact; economic development; crime reduction, and educational opportunities.
In addition to creating a vibrant social network and critical partnerships ReTree Shively has joined the ongoing effort to change the ‘brand’ of our part of South West Louisville. The excitement we generate through our Facebook page and our direct outreach efforts are starting to connect the locals to those business owners who support efforts to improve the ‘Southend’.
Successfully communicating to our supporters puts Shively in a favorable light throughout our community. We are thrilled that people are recognizing the Dixie Highway area for trees, solar and corridor improvements because it illustrates something that we have known all along, -which is that Shively has significance within our greater community that expands outside of our borders.