The city of East Point has been awarded Level 1 Accreditation by ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program and The Morton Arboretum, for achieving specific standards of professional practices deemed essential for arboreta and botanic gardens, according to a press release. The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program is the only global initiative to officially recognize arboreta at various levels of development, capacity, and professionalism.
“The city of East Point is honored to be awarded this accreditation,” said Mayor Deana Holiday Ingraham. “Our residents, city leaders, and city staff take pride in sustaining the plants and trees that make up our beautiful city and create a healthier living environment for all.”
Chartered in 1887, East Point is known for its Hank Aaron Oak Tree and Pink Lady’s Slipper Orchids, an endangered plant species, both located in Connally Nature Park. Additionally, the city is working towards registering the Hank Aaron Oak Tree into the American Forests Champion Trees National Register to recognize it as a tourist destination.
“This Arboretum Level 1 Accreditation represents the city’s commitment to our trails and paths master plan, making East Point a greener and healthier city,” said Dominic Maldonado, City of East Point GIS Coordinator. “The city’s long-term goals are to bring more social awareness to our vegetative biodiversity and sustainable communities.”
The city’s arboretum data collection started in April 2018 with the assistance of Trees Atlanta. Together, they identified over 25 species of trees and plants across 26 acres in Connally Nature Park, Spring Street Park and Sumner Park with several more under review.
The city will continue working with Trees Atlanta for the state’s Arbor Day in February as well as Geographic Information Systems Day in November to educate the public on the importance of plant ecosystems and geosciences.