Bob Thibodeaux’s office is a small iron table, stacked with books and papers underneath a sun umbrella. The umbrella is the second thing in the office providing shade, the other a canopy of trees that surround the courtyard at the entrance of his shop in Church Point.
At 78 Bob Thibodeaux has made his life all about trees.
When he was only 6 or 7 his Great Grandmother would babysit him while his parents worked out in the field. She would take him through the woods pointing out pecan trees and berry trees, teaching him how to identify each. It was this hands on education that sparked Bob’s interest in all the green life growing around us.
A tree preservationist he’s dedicated his whole life to keeping trees and plants as healthy as possible. A self described tree hugger, Bob sat and chatted about the problems he’s seen over the years and warned that they might be getting worse.
“The biggest problem we have in urban forestry today is soil decline,” he said.
An advocate of composting and recycling he worries that we’re pulling out too many nutrients from the soil and replacing them with chemical pesticides and fertilizers. The tree he worries about the most is the coastal live oaks, for which south Louisiana are famous. Spending part of his time doing his best to replant as many of the trees as he can, and hoping that he can leave behind a legacy that will continue to grow for generations.