Arbor Conservation Board from Sept. 4, 2020

The Macon-Bibb Arbor Conservation Board met on Sept. 4.

Members present:  Michael Glisson (chair of this meeting), Alex Morrison, Wayne Woodworth, Bob Sargent, Seth Hawkins, Karol Kelly, Erin Keller, Ryan Griffin, Emily Hopkins, Kim Pickens.

Agenda Items:

Update on Amended Ordinance approved 7.21.2020. Michael Glisson reviewed reason for name change and request by Commissioner (Elaine) Lucas to add two news members who would be Citizens at Large. Commissioner Lucas suggested two names. Karol Kelly will reach out to the nominees to see if they are willing to serve. The purpose of adding to two members to the Board is to increase diversity.

Board Make-up and Vacancies. Karol Kelly noted that several positions on the board remain unfilled at present. She spoke to the following vacant positions: Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful, and Planning and Zoning. Despite shortages of personnel in these offices, a representative from each will be sought. Michael Glisson will reach out to the committees and ask for representatives to serve on the Arbor Conservation Board. Wider and more complete representation.

Nominations for chair and secretary. Michael Glisson  and Karol Kelly explained the role of chair and secretary. Bob Sargent was nominated as chair by Karol Kelly and Michael Glisson. Bob Sargent was elected chair. Emily Hopkins was nominated as secretary. Emily Hopkins accepted the nomination and was elected secretary.

Invasive Plant removal at Amerson River Park (Project Possibility). All members who spoke were in favor of planning an event where the public could work on invasive plant removal at Amerson. The date for such an event has yet to be determined. There is the possibility of funding from the Forestry Commission to assist with pesticides and signage. Several members of the board suggested contacting local organizations and businesses who might also be interested in participating as service to the community. There was informal agreement on the desirability and feasibility of the project. A decision on the size, location and date for the project was not made today, but should be made soon given possibility of a grant and the need to eradicate plants during growing season. The date will be settled via poll of members. It will be a community event.

New Item:Possible project: Cherry Trees. Wayne Woodworth outlined the work being done to find a replacement for the yoshino cherry tree. He spoke to the advantages and challenges posed by a new cultivar, prunus ‘Helen Taft.’ 8-10 other cultivars are being tested. The possible development of an arboretum in Macon was mentioned.

Planting of fruit trees in East Macon. Alex Morrison introduced and spoke to the agenda item. The two most likely locations for this project are Mill Hill and Davis Homes. The plants would produce fruit, and would require minimum maintenance. The plants would be of aesthetic and utilitarian value.

Date of Next Meeting: October 29th 9 a.m.