Celebrating Arbor Day in Ames’ Tree City

AMES, Iowa  --  Arbor Day was marked by the City of Ames with a tree planting ceremony in Stuart Smith Park.

“Today we’re celebrating Arbor Day. We’re going to plant six trees in one of our 36 parks,” said Joshua Thompson, Parks and Facilities Supt. for the city. “The city of Ames is responsible for all the trees in the public right of way and all the parks systems.”

Thompson said there are 16,000 trees in right of way trees in Ames. He manages the trees in right-of-way, and in City Parks.

The City is now in year four, of a 20-year plan to manage trees after the Emerald Ash Borer started infecting trees in the area.

“We're working on getting the stumps removed and getting those filled in,” said Thompson. “This fall we will do all the ash trees that were removed will be replanted, with different species of trees.”

The City counts on help from groups like the Ames Foundation, and Trees Forever.

“We’re a Tree City USA, here in Ames. To be part of that, you have to have a city proclamation, which the mayor did last Tuesday," said Dave Brotherson, of the local Trees Forever Chapter. “They also have a tree planting ceremony, which is what today kind of fulfills, and you also have to have a tree budget, which the City of Ames does.”