County-wide initiative to replant trees in area

BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - The number of trees missing from Bay County in the wake of Hurricane Michael is undoubtedly noticeable.

Ty Farris, Manager of Parks of Panama City, said, "We've lost, as a result of Michael, a million trees within the city limits."

ReTreePC is a Panama City-led initiative working to bring trees back to the area.

"We hope to plant a hundred thousand trees in the city of Panama City in the next five years," said Farris.

But Panama City staff aren't the only ones working to help the area.

Bay County's Long-Term Recovery Task Force has a plan to provide residents with coupons. They can trade in these coupons at nurseries to help get trees growing in residential areas again.

"We're able to, you know, pull that together to provide the trees, you know, to the residents at little or no cost, but also to make sure our nurseries and the folks that are selling the trees are, you know, part of this," said Executive Director of the Bay County Tourist Development Council Dan Rowe.

A certified arborist working with ReTreePC says certain trees are better to plant in situations like this.

"Magnolias are one, and we have live oaks would be another great tree, hickories, maples are great," said Certified Arborist with The Project Canopy Aubrey Santucci.

"That's 3.1 million cubic yards of vegetative debris, what we've removed in five months, that's the equivalent of 32 years worth of normal storm," said Farris.

Even though the damage to our trees was massive, our county will one day bloom again.

You can help ReTreePC by visiting their website.