The care and maintenance of Aiken’s trees is getting a modern makeover with the assistance of the city’s new GIS mapping system and a local resident, whose generous donation to Aiken Land Conservancy will fund a complete inventory of the trees on city property and promote the preservation of Aiken’s urban forest.

The age, size, location, health and species of every city owned tree will be recorded and stored digitally, allowing work crews quick access to the in-formation through GPS. The catalogued data will help develop a management system for city parks and parkways, identify rare trees, and deter-mine an efficient maintenance plan for trimming trees in the city’s rights of way. The last inventory was completed 10 years ago.

Aiken’s signature South Boundary oaks are just a fraction of the 8,000 or so trees that the City of Aiken is tasked with maintaining. In return, the trees reduce air pollutants, stormwater runoff, energy consumption and improve water quality. The City of Aiken has a long history of valuing the benefits of greenspace and has been the recipient of the “Tree City USA” award every year since 1985. For more information, please call the Department of Public Works at 803-642-7610.