People in the Gulf South have always cherished the live oak as an icon of grace, strength and commitment. Lush green canopies envelop our byways, bayous and backyards. Legions of live oaks protect our towns as guardians for tradition and strongholds of resilience. Ancient landmark oaks represent stability and integrity in an inconstant, uncertain world.
We lost many large live oaks to the winds and waters of unprecedented storms such as Hurricane Katrina. Trees once grand and proud were twisted and broken. Shaded groves became sunburned fields. Green spaces embraced by intertwined limbs lay open and exposed.
Many centuries-old live oaks unwillingly fell to nature’s wrath, but countless others stood strong. Today, those survivor oaks—like their native communities—flourish with new hope and irrepressible spirit.
On August 29, 2015, the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, we announced a corporate plan to help carry on the live oak’s legacy in the Gulf South communities we serve. We call this multi-year, multifaceted project Perseverance Oaks. The name Perseverance Oaks evokes many strong qualities that distinguish and sustain our region and its people in prosperity and through adversity: determination; devotion; loyality; strength; tradition; and tenacity.
Perseverance Oaks will slowly help replenish storm-scarred treescapes with offspring of local landmark live oaks and other live oaks in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas.
By harvesting, nurturing and planting the children of landmark live oaks and planting other live oak seedlings and sapling, we aspire to
We opened our doors 100-plus years ago to create opportunities for people and the communities we serve. Since then, we’ve been a proud community partner committed to quality of life for the people who call the Gulf South home.
Our Perseverance Oaks goals depend on many people and partnerships to make sure our live oaks live and thrive. We rely on and appreciate the countless leaders, businesses and organizations dedicated to growing the Gulf South together.
Our founding corporate partners include:Mississippi State University Coastal Research and Extension Service and The Sun Herald.
Our sponsored partners include the Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain, a member supported, not-for-profit organization conserving, promoting and preserving the open spaces and green spaces of ecological, cultural or scenic significance in the counties of the Mississippi Coastal Plain.
Our local community partners include
As part of our sponsored partnership with the Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain, we are the exclusive sponsor of the Land Trust Living Memorial program through Perseverance Oaks.The living memorial program offers you the opportuntiy to purchase a live oak planted in honor of someone you admire or in memory of someone important to you. As your live oak grows, it becomes a living, lasting testament to people who have made positive differences in your live and the lives of those around them.