Sunday, October 27, 2013

trees, trees, glorious trees

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Up early for a very worthwhile cause on Friday. I was asked if I would like to attend a tree planting initiative coordinated by the local not-for-profit Tree Fredericksburg, in conjunction with local volunteers from Dominion Power and Cox Communication. The event was made possible with a grant provided by Dominion.

The planting took place on two sites in Fredericksburg. The first included 58 street trees within the newer Villas of Snowden residential subdivision, which was largely devoid of trees. The trees included several species and home owners were able to have some input into species selection for planting in front of their homes. The second site included 38 trees planted around the Old Walker Grant School and the Boys and Girls Club of Fredericksburg

All volunteers were fitted out with safety vests, goggles and gloves. We were given a safety instruction, did a quick warm-up and were then given a tree planting demonstration. Breaking into groups of three to four people, each group was issued with shovels, stake tampers, pliers, tree guards and plastic sheet/tarp to empty tree and soil onto. Each tree had had it's hole pre-dug - so this made it easier to remove soil. Prior to the tree plant, trees had had roots washed, been delivered to site and stakes and a bag of mulch supplied to each tree location. 

Working on many large design projects during my life as a Landscape Architect, meant that I was not involved in a great deal of site work: more along the lines of inspection than supervision. This plant was a great insight into in situ tree planting - and application of the bare rooted planting technique developed by Bonnie Lee Appleton from Virginia Tech. 

The morning was cold, but we soon warmed up with some physical work. It was fun working with a bunch of Dominion line and office workers, many who exhibited the bravado to try and 'out-plant' each other - thus making the atmosphere somewhat lighthearted. I had a great time and came away with that feeling of virtue obtained by doing something worthwhile. Paul commented upon how I 'glowed' with enthusiasm on my return. 

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