Kokomo to plant 400 trees by end of October

Kokomo Parks Department employees Sam Kuntz, right, and Tom Lane plant a sassafras tree in Foster Park in Kokomo, Ind., Friday, Oct. 10, 2014. The city of Kokomo will plant 400 trees in October in conjunction with National Neighborwoods Month. (AP Photo/The Kokomo Tribune, Josh Sigler)

KOKOMO, Ind. (AP) — A central Indiana city will plant 400 trees by the end of this month in an effort to improve its appearance.

Since 2008, 2,700 trees have been planted in Kokomo, the Kokomo Tribune reported. That number will rise to more than 3,000 by October’s end thanks to Indiana’s Community & Forestry Department, which recently donated the trees.

Kokomo parks superintendent Randy Morris said the contribution came at a great time for the city. He said trees in all of the city’s parks are nearing “the end of their lifespan” and that “it’s time we start to replenish for the future.”

Last week, staff members with the parks department planted the trees along the pathways on the west end of Foster Park.

“If you’re visiting our trail system, it’s a much more pleasant walk when you have shade, benches and things to rest and not get as heated,” Morris said. “Things like these trees definitely make the experience more aesthetically pleasing.”

Kokomo native Cassie Hauswald of the Nature Conservancy helped give pointers on how to plant the trees.

“A lot of the people here are working for the city,” Hauswald said. “It’s part of their jobs to plant trees, and it’s important to give those trees a good start. They have a lot better chance of success if you plant them correctly, so it’s a good return on investment just to teach them how to plant.”

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