Planting + Neglect = Waste (9/16/08)
They say planting a tree is an investment in the future. And every year, Louisville spends a small fortune planting numerous young trees in urban neighborhoods so one day those areas will enjoy the same kind of shade and beauty to be found in many of the city's older neighborhoods.
But you can't just plant trees and forget about them. To have any shot at survival, they need to be mulched and watered consistently. And that's where the Public Works Department is falling down on the job.
Properly cared for, a tree like this one - and the many others that have been planted in the center city in recent years - would represent a good use of public money. But the lack of care they receive once they've been placed in the ground turns a good investment into a bunch of unsightly dead trees.
That doesn't seem terribly smart to me.
Since our own Public Works Department doesn't seem to have the resources or resolve to give these new saplings the water and other care they need, maybe the time has come to pass an ordinance requiring that all new trees planted by the city on pubic property must have an outside maintenance agreement to assure they are properly cared for.
If we can't afford that, there'd be fewer new trees. But if all we're going to do is kill them anyway, that wouldn't be much of a loss.
I'm Bill Lamb, and that's my...Point of View.