Hospital Tree Planting Project:
In July 2004 the Decorah Tree Board along with Boy Scout Troop 66 and volunteers from the Winneshiek County Memorial Hospital planted 21 trees along the boulevards of Commerce Street and Clearview Drive. This tree planting was part of a larger plan by the hospital to reinvigorate their existing and recently acquired property with a variety of trees and landscaping. In the fall several classes of high school students planted an additional 44 trees along side of the earlier plantings.
Broadway Wall Tree Planting Project:
Initiated by the Tree Board and then spearheaded by adjacent property owners approximately 16 low-growing ornamental trees were planted along the newly constructed East Broadway wall in 2005 and 2006. Adjoining property owners and some of their children, neighbors, and several tree board members gathered to plant and mulch the trees one Sunday in late fall. A wide variety of trees were selected by the property owners from a list of trees considered appropriate for the location.
Branching Out Tree Planting Project (West Main & Water Streets):
This project was initiated by the tree board and received assistance from the Decorah Downtown Betterment Association, Kyoto Committee, Luther’s Environmental Concerns group, property owners, and volunteers from the community. A $2000 grant from Alliant Energy / Trees Forever through their 2007 Fall Branching Out Program provided the majority of funding for the 35 trees planted with property owners contributing as well. This project will help create an attractive downtown area.
College Drive Boulevard (Arboretum) Program:
The Tree Board in past years has planted a number of trees in the area between College Drive and Sunset Avenue in the Dahly Addition to help replace the aging large maple trees. In 2007, the tree board celebrated Arbor Day with approximately a dozen neighborhood kids and their parents by planting several trees in this area. The project was continued in the fall of 2008 with the planting of trees and shrubs.
Boulevard Tree Program:
The Tree Board encourages property owners to plant boulevard trees with a coupon system. The current boulevard tree voucher is worth $35.00 toward the purchase of a tree from a list of pre-approved trees at one of Decorah’s two nurseries: Henzler’s Garden Center or Ladybug Landscaping. Residents over age 60 may obtain two trees free of charge up to $60.00 per tree. Tree board members offer planting assistance to older residents and those who need help. Call Roger Timp, Tree Board Member at 382-5913 for advice, approval and assistance.
Trout Run Trail:
When the Trout Run Trail was proposed, the Decorah Tree Board pledged to plant trees along the trail with a commitment of $6,000 over three years, 2008-2010. Part of the funding has been provided by Trees Forever matching grants.
Several of the projects done by the Decorah Tree Board have been supported by Trees Forever. Grants for matching funds through Alliant Energy and Black Hills Energy, have allowed the Tree Board to develop more successful tree planting programs.
A brochure “Planting Trees in Decorah” has been distributed to local nurseries, realtor offices, the Chamber of Commerce offices, and City Hall. The brochure is free of charge and describes the value of trees to property owners, summarizes the provisions of the City Ordinance regarding trees along rights-of-way, and includes lists of trees recommended for planting in city boulevards. It is also available on this website.
Since 2005 Decorah has been recognized by the National Arbor Day Foundation, in cooperation with U.S. Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters, as a Tree City, USA.