Tennessee Urban Forestry Council Certifies Arboreta


The Tennessee Urban Forestry Council (TUFC) has certified 12 new arboreta throughout the state, recertified 14 existing arboreta and certified 4 tree sanctuaries in the initial stage of its new homeowner tree sanctuary program.

With the 12 additions to its arboreta program, the TUFC has a total of 93 throughout Tennessee. To become certified, each arboretum must meet strict guidelines, one of which is to have a specific number of tree species based upon the level of arboretum designation.

“TUFC’s arboretum program is an excellent way to recognize the educational and research efforts of the arboreta,” said Urban Forester Brian Rucker with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry. “The program also highlights environmental contributions to communities by providing unique opportunities for children and adults to observe the distinctive qualities of trees.” TUFC has certified arboreta in Tennessee for the past 16 years.

New certified Level 1 arboreta include: Drummonds Park (Drummonds), East Park (Tullahoma), Mulch Company (Murfreesboro), Columbia State Community College (Columbia), LaGrange Boardwalk (LaGrange), Oaklands Park (Murfreesboro), Paul Jermanus Memorial (Nashville), Union University (Jackson), Cleveland-Bradley County Greenway (Cleveland), Pink Palace (Memphis) and Mabry-Hazen House (Knoxville). The Tennessee Residence in Nashville is the only new Level 2 arboretum.

Arboreta recertified include:
Level 1-Riverdale Elementary School (Germantown), Sea Isle Park and School (Memphis), Townsend Riverwalk (Townsend) and Northeast State Community College (Blountville). Level 2- Glenview (Memphis), University of Tennessee-Chattanooga, Burchfield Grove (Sevierville), Lichterman Nature Center (Memphis), Ardinna Woods (Jonesborough), Dyersburg Middle School (Dyersburg) and Cleveland State Community College (Cleveland)
Level 3- Louise Pearson Memorial Park (Bells) and University of Tennessee Gardens-Jackson Level 4- Reflection Riding Arboretum and Nature Center (Chattanooga)

In addition to a specific number of tree species for each level of arboretum, universal standards for arboreta require that trees must be properly labeled for public educational purposes and the site must be properly maintained throughout the certification period. Other standards may include providing a map for self-guided tours or staff for public education programs.

TUFC’s new Tree Sanctuary program launched in 2016 and is closely connected to the arboreta program. The program was created for homeowners who otherwise could not support a full-fledged arboretum due to various limitations. It was designed as an education program for the homeowner to learn about the benefits of trees on their property, to encourage establishment of diverse species for sustainability and to beautify their community.

TUFC’s arboretum certification program is sponsored by the Tennessee Urban Forestry Council in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry. For more information on arboretum certification, contact the program coordinator Jill Smith at 615-638-8027, or email JillSmith.tufc@gmail.com. Visit the TUFC website at www.tufc.com/arboreta for information on creating or visiting an arboretum.