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It was a chill gray morning. Sixty-two stalwarts went out to do battle with the bare landscape and ugly naked guardrail. The shovels were laid out in neat rows; the picks and the auger lay in readiness to be used as backup. The trees were ready, the volunteers were ready….it was GO TIME. Over two years ago, as the Post Oak Tritt roadway construction project was still underway, Dick Voss of the Post Oak Homeowner’s Association Board of Directors, made contact with Gwen Baldwin, Director of Keep Cobb Beautiful. Keep Cobb Beautiful is a nonprofit organization created for the purpose of “assisting the County and Board of Commissioners in establishing, promoting and maintaining a countywide policy for improved environmental and waste management.” Their mission is ‘promoting stewardship of our communities through litter prevention, beautification, recycling and environmental education’.
In discussing the problem of having many of our mature trees taken out because of the road construction, Dick asked Gwen Baldwin if there was any way to have KCB provide replacement trees. Because of budget issues at the time, Gwen was unable to give an immediate answer, but promised that she would look into, and work on obtaining suitable material. After many phone calls, e mails, and personal meetings,
it was determined that Cobb Trees (a division of Keep Cobb Beautiful) could indeed provide some appropriate trees. Gwen put Dick in touch with Scott Tubbs, the Cobb County Landscape Director, and he met with Scott several times on the site. Scott was generous with his time and expertise in suggesting the type, number and placement of the trees to give reasonable cover to homeowners and at reasonable cost to Keep Cobb Beautiful.
As a result of the ongoing discussions, 80 Virginia Pines were obtained at no cost to Post Oak Homeowners Association or to Post Oak Recreation Association, whose facility received 30 of the trees to replace trees removed during construction. The remainder of the trees were spaced along Post Oak Tritt from Tritt Springs Trace to Mitchell Road which will provide homeowners with a sound and visual buffer, as well as
to provide an attractive alternative to the aforementioned ‘naked’ guardrail. At 8:00 am on that cold Saturday morning, using the Post Oak Recreation area for a gathering and staging area, 62 volunteers comprised of Post Oak community residents, volunteers from Keep Cobb Beautiful, and a group of young people from Hightower Middle School received a quick lesson in proper hole digging, tree planting and mulching from Scott Tubbs. Fortified with coffee and biscuits donated by Chick-Fil-A, we picked out shovels and went out to dig, plant and mulch.
With the exceptional effort of the volunteers, the entire roadway was planted with the 80 trees much faster than expected, prompting Scott to say that he had never seen a project like this go as quickly or smoothly. Scott stated that Cobb County would water in the new trees a few times over the winter to ensure that they take proper root and give them every opportunity to thrive.
The entire community will benefit from this effort to beautify our neighborhood and protect and maintain our property values. Sincere thanks go to Gwen Baldwin of Keep Cobb Beautiful, Scott Tubbs of Cobb County , and especially to the hardy volunteers who braved the cold weather, the mud and the steep slopes to plant the trees and improve the beauty of the entire Post Oak Community.