The Walton Family Foundation announced Thursday (Oct. 5) it will provide grants totaling $787,000 to six cities in Benton County to help increase and diversify the area’s tree canopy.
The funding, according to the foundation, will allow Bella Vista, Bentonville, Centerton, Gravette, Pea Ridge and Siloam Springs to provide more than 2,000 trees of 50 different species for municipal projects and resident giveaways.
“Planting trees today is one way to reinforce our family’s long-term commitment to the region,” foundation board member Steuart Walton said in a statement. “My hope is future Northwest Arkansas residents will enjoy a distinctive and mature tree canopy that inspires them to preserve our region’s natural beauty as a point of distinction and pride for generations to come.”
The funding will allow each city to plant large trees near trails, highways, parks, airports, elementary schools, playgrounds, golf courses and other public spaces to improve livability and economic activity.
Cities will host giveaways this fall for residents to receive smaller trees in three- to five-gallon pots. Giveaways will be held in Bentonville on October 14; Pea Ridge and Gravette on October 21; Centerton on October 27 and 28; and Bella Vista and Siloam Springs on October 28.
Each municipality will release full event details in the coming weeks.