Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tree Planting

Recently 200+ ash trees were cut down in our neighborhood.
Including one in our boulevard that was close to
20 years old.
There is an ash tree disease coming our way so as
a preventative measure, the trees were cut down
and new trees were to be planted in their place.

We live less than a block from a city park.  This banner hung at the
park for a couple of weeks, alerting the neighborhood that it would
be "good" for us to come out and help plant the new trees!

Over the past week, in my neighborhood I would see this
This digger would drive up and down the streets, digging holes
in boulevards for the new trees.
Load after load of trees were brought in. 
The piles in the background are wood chips. 
Wood chips from the 200+ trees that were cut down and
then "ground" into wood chips!  Part of my tree is in that pile.

On tree planting day, not only would we be planting trees,
but we were told lunch would be provided
so picnic tables were brought in also.
Saturday, April 24 we woke up to pouring rain.
The planting event was to go on "Rain or Shine"
The Husband and I doned our rain ponchos and up to the park we went.
We stood in line to register with many people that we'd never seen before.  If they lived in our neighborhood then we were not doing a good job about knowing our neighbors!  We later found out that many people just come to these events from different cities and from different parts of our city. These people want more trees planted in the world and will venture out on rainy, muddy days to plant trees with a stranger.

Old people and young people.  People in rain ponchos and this young boy in a clear garbage bag came out in unity to beautify our neighborhood!
We were greeted by Jacob Ryg, the forestor hired to help the city with this project.  All of the money for this whole project came from grant money.  Our city paid nothing toward the project.  We were given a lesson in how to plant the trees.  Most of us, I could tell from the audience questions, had never planted a tree before! 
Then off we went.  The Husband is in the blue poncho.  Our neighbor and friend, Randy, planted with us.  The soil in our area is pretty much clay.  And it is a heavy soil.  And it sticks like glue to shovels and shoes!
Shandra and Kristen ride the same city bus to work that I take.  I have chatted with them and they showed up on our team to plant, as well! 
We were supervised.  Which was a good thing.  The Tree Man rode his four-wheeler through the neighborhood checking on our progress.  Sometimes he pointed out where we had planted too low or too high so we needed to pull the tree out and start again.
Here is the group working on the hole for the replacement tree in our boulevard.
The Husband and I standing next to the tree we planted in our boulevard.  We are the proud owners of an Acolade Elm Tree!
Each tree needed wood chips around the base.  There were bucket loaders filling trailers from the Big Wood Chip Pile.  These trailers would be pulled by trucks through the neighborhoods.  Volunteers would sit on the trailer, jump off and shovel chips around each Baby Tree.

We worked from 9 a.m. until noon.
In rain and mist.
But I didn't hear one person complain.
I heard chatter
And neighbors meeting neighbors
It was one of the best mornings I've spent in a long time.

Can you see green stars on this map?
Each star represents a tree.
There were over 500 trees planted in those three hours.
Planted, mulched with wood chips and staked up.
An incredible, very-well-organized event.
I didn't snap a picture of our great catered lunch.
I was too tired to think about grabbing the camera!
Here are my shoes after most of the mud was scrapped off. 
My jeans were pretty mud covered.
The sun did come out at lunch.  Causing the mud to dry and cake
This little guy had boots from the movie "Cars".  Quite cute.

It was an amazing day.
I think God was happy to see His kids working side by side
with a common goal and differences put aside

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