NOW PROUDLY CERTIFIED — Christopher Jackson, left, and Mariellen Calabro hold their certificates identifying them as Florida-Friendly Landscaping Professionals.

Two DeLand public-works employees have been certified as Florida-Friendly Landscaping Professionals.

City Forester Mariellen Calabro and Arborist Technician Christopher Jackson received their certification through the Florida-Friendly Landscaping program offered through the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.

To complete the Florida-Friendly Landscaping program, participants are well-versed in FFL principles and can address common landscape issues by using environmentally sustainable landscape management practices.

Calabro and Jackson are two of three certified professionals in Volusia County.

“First, I want to congratulate Mariellen and Chris on earning this certification. It took a lot of effort, time, initiative and perseverance by both of these dedicated employees,” said Mayor Bob Apgar. “The City Commission has long advocated that Florida-Friendly landscaping be incorporated into projects as part of an effort to become a more sustainable city.”

Public Services Director Chad A. Gamble added that, “Mariellen and Chris can now serve as an authoritative voice during the project review process to ensure best practices are followed that help conserve water and protect our natural resources.

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— Compiled by Business Editor Joe Crews

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