These welcome autumn rains mean we're wrapping up Friends' Adopt a Tree program for the 2012 season.
We started a bit early this year due to the very early spring, which led into another extremely dry summer of drought. Hard on all the park's trees -- in fact the entire city's urban forest, but here in our little corner of paradise the 73 volunteers watering the 94 trees currently in the program kept the saplings going. A neighborly thing.
Four saplings were lost this season -- two to vandalism and two to well, just difficulties with transplanting. Someone thought one of the blossoming cherries was pretty and lopped its top off to take home, I guess, and a White Oak up along the laneway in the north end had it's bark stripped one night which means it will die. We also lost the new Shagbark and Bitternut Hickory saplings planted in the early summer of 2011 most likely due to the fact that their deep taproots make them very hard to transplant.
On the plus side of the tree inventory, the Forestry department has said we'll hopefully get Hickory replacements next spring. The Shagbark had been particularly requested to replace the old dying one which had been orange-dot-of-deathed and was taken down this summer. (The Shagbark was the one in the circle of stones left over from the Crawford bridge.)
As well, our Park Supervisor tells us we may be getting six more Sakura Cherries, possibly planted as a grove where the Shagbark used to be in the north end of the park – just to spread their spring beauty around a bit.
PS: the trees pictured here are White Ash. Their spectacular distinctive fall colour -- burgandy on the outside and glowing yellow inside -- make them easy to spot in the fall. Sadly these are one of the ash types which is being devastated by the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) but let's enjoy them while they're here...