Detroit — A group of landscapers were busy Monday morning planting a black gum tree along Oakman Boulevard before snow and subzero temperatures set in for the city.

The black gum is among roughly 900 other trees that have gone up in Detroit this fall as part of the city’s “10,000 Up” program. The initiative aims to plant 10,000 new trees across the city in the next three years.

Monday’s planting marked the end of the first phase of the initiative, which is expected to resume in the spring.

City officials say they have knocked down more than 10,000 trees lost to disease, infestation and old age in recent years. They plan to continue those efforts.


The '10,000 Up' program is part of Mayor Mike Duggan’s 10-point plan for revitalizing neighborhoods in Detroit. Nicquel Terry, The Detroit News

The “10,000 Up” program is part of Mayor Mike Duggan’s 10-point plan for revitalizing neighborhoods in Detroit. The city is allocating $9 million for the initiative.

Erica Hill, the city’s forestry manager, said officials have included residents in the program by seeking their input on where to plant the trees.

“The trees add home property values ... they increase your values by about 30 percent,” Hill said. “It also decreases the pollution in the air. ... It shades our houses and keeps our utility bills down.”

Hill said the above-average temperatures in early fall allowed the city to plant trees without the threat of the ground freezing.

So far, neighborhoods including Grandmont Rosedale, Atkinson and Aviation have benefited from the tree planting.

Hill said a wide variety of trees will sprout up from the program. Among them are gingko, maple and coffee.

Residents on Oakman say the trees are beautifying their neighborhood.

Eddie Holmes, who has lived in his home for 29 years, said the program marks the first major tree planting since he moved to the area.

“I think it will be a great asset,” Holmes said.

Holmes’ son agreed.

“I think the city’s program is exactly what we need, it’s the birth of a new generation of fresh air,” said Esmond Holmes, 27. “It gives the homeowner something to look forward to.”

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Twitter: @NicquelTerry

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