Annual Arbor Day plant sale sees largest selection yet

The annual Arbor Day plant sale kept the North Alabama Agriplex busy Thursday morning. (Maggie Darnell for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Cullman County Forestry Planning Committee hosted its annual Arbor Day plant sale Thursday morning at the North Alabama Agriplex. The yearly favorite raises funds for the committee’s youth Forestry Awareness Week Now (FAWN) program and FFA Forestry Judging contest. FAWN is held at Sportsman Lake Park in in the spring and fall and teaches local sixth-grade students the importance of natural resources and appreciating, managing and protecting them for the future.

Cullman County Extension Coordinator Tony Glover said the annual sale has been hosted in different locations, but it’s been held at the Agriplex for the last three years.

“Hopefully we’ve found a permanent home for the sale,” he smiled. “We’ve had it at the city civic center, farmers’ market. We’ve had it at several locations, and this is a really great place to have it as the sale kind of fits in with their mission anyway and it’s just nice. Plus, we’re doing it indoors.”

Shoppers perused a large selection of landscape trees, small ornamental trees and flowering shrubs, which were all $2 each. Glover explained they were seedling bare root plants, which are easy to transplant.  The sale boasted the largest selection in its history, consisting of about 40 species of plants.

“We have a wide variety of trees and shrubs, not just trees, so it’s not just a tree sale,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of flowering shrubs and flowering trees, as well as large shade trees. When we first started this sale, or at least when I was first involved, it was mostly trees that you would find in the woods. But we’ve found that most homeowners are looking for more smaller things; they wanted small trees or some flowering shrubs, things that would beautify the landscape, but they didn’t need a lot of the big-tree species. We’ve kind of changed the sale over time to be more landscaping-friendly for homeowners that are just looking for ways to beautify the landscape. Rather than it being forestry-oriented to people who just want to plant a bunch of trees and have some woods, it’s more focused for homeowners that just want landscape plants to beautify their landscapes. It’s kind of changed over time to fill that need.”

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