Beaufort became a “Tree City USA” in 1986, an honor bestowed by the National Arbor Day Foundation. The local Beaufort Council of Garden Clubs was instrumental in helping the community achieve this distinguished status. The City has continued to be honored as a recipient of Tree City USA awards over the past years for demonstrating progress in its community in the areas of tree inventory and analysis.
To build on this important designation, Lady’s Island Garden Club, inspired by a Tree Walk in Westhampton Beach, Long Island, has developed a self-guided Beaufort Tree Walk. Throughout this project, they sought to provide an experience that would be both enjoyable and educational. The Walk highlights native and notable trees primarily in the historic area of ‘The Old Point.’ The project is the result of three years of research and planning by the Garden Club. The original Tree Walk committee included Cecile Dorr – Chair, Bonnie Buchanan, Carol Clark, Pam Floyd, Betsi Hilton and Leslie Olson. They led the research and development of the walk with the help and enthusiasm of the Lady’s Island Garden Club membership.
Encouragement for the project came from then Mayor Bill Rauch, with considerable help and expertise from City Horticulturist Eliza Hill and Clemson Horticulturist, Laura Lee Rose.
Beginning at the corner of Craven and Carteret Streets in Morrall Park, the Walk circles through ‘The Point,’ then past the Arsenal, and traverses the Beaufort County Library grounds, continues past the Historic Verdier House walled garden, and concludes beyond the Town Clock entrance on Bay Street in the Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park.
Free Tree Walk booklets – complete with a map, illustrations, descriptions, and GPS coordinates – are available at The Visitors Center in the historic Arsenal on Craven Street. You can also access The Walk online at www.ladysislandgardenclub.com