Tall trees to come down in Lions Park
By Timothy Schafer, The Nelson Daily
A grove op is planned for the green space in Lions Park next year.
The city service club the Lions will soon be taking the operation of removing old, dying and soon-to-be falling trees and putting in a grove of new trees to keep the Uphill green space a leafy green.
The imminent demise of the large trees is no longer in question, said Lions member Al Friend, because the 60-year lifespan of the Lombardy poplar is nearly reached (planted in 1953).
But what might be in question is people’s reaction when five of the trees at the eastern end of the park on Delbruck Street fall under the bite of the chainsaw next year, said Coun. Robin Cherbo.
“People will be coming out of the woodwork to protest this one,” said Coun. Cherbo. “We’ve gone through a few issues in the past when trees are about to be cut down.”
“I’m suggesting (cutting in) April of next year because I’ll be in Ireland,” said Mayor John Dooley with a smile.
Coun. Cherbo also recommended having a public meeting so it does not come as a big surprise to people when the trees start to come down.
The idea of cutting down a few trees (five) at a time as well as explaining that the trees are dying — and there is a resultant safety hazard — has quelled some of the emotion that tree cutting elicits, said Friend.
“I think people accept that those trees need to be dealt with in some way,” he said. “But as the trees come down in small numbers each year, they will be replaced.”
The trees along Delbruck and Falls streets are beginning to die and lose their branches, but the club is looking to replace all of the trees with young, columnar trees to keep the amphitheatre aspect of the park.
The project is expected to take five to eight years.
The grove will be planted to enhance shade in the park, with native species being incorporated into the plan, and the grassy space maintained with picnic tables added in for small gatherings.
Coun. Donna Macdonald said the City’s Public Works department should be consulted as to the location of the grove, to insure there are no pipes or infrastructure under the ground where the grove is to be planted.
The club is expected to cover the cost of purchasing the trees for the grove, while they will be looking to the City for help in the planting.
Speaking of terrible trunks …
There are other problem trees rooting around in the city, said Coun. Bob Adams.
Young oak trees in the city’s downtown area are beginning to drop acorns and are already causing footing problems as people slip on the hard, round objects.
There is also a row of Lombardy poplar trees beside Hume School that have reached the end of its life span, said Coun. Adams. Windstorms have knocked off dead branches six to eight inches thick, a potential hazard for people walking or driving in the area.
“Those trees are on City property and will also have to be removed,” he said.
The tree maintenance plan for the City is in draft form (on the action items list). Staff will be requesting a budget in 2011 to have the plan embedded in the financial plan.
Minor baseball makes their pitch
Minor baseball will be making a presentation to the Lions Club this week to make improvements to the baseball diamond the park contains.
The plan is for some work on the infield and to create dugouts for the players. However, dugouts could interfere with the root structures, said Friend, and there are a few problems with that.
“But from our point of view, any improvements to the infrastructure is a good thing, but we don’t want any kind of permanent obstructions for marking the outfield,” he said. “We want to keep it open.”