Tree Commission plans Arbor Day
By Matt Echelberry
Arbor Day plans and replanting at Amman’s Reservoir were major discussion topics during the Galion Street Tree Commission meeting on Feb. 18. The commission finalized details for Arbor Day 2013, which is April 26. Each year, tree seedlings are passed out to third graders at Galion Intermediate School. One member raised an issue that they must purchase the seedlings in increments of 100, buy there are 168 students. It was resolved to buy 200 and give the remainder to teachers or plant at reservoirs.
Another part of the celebration discussed at past meetings is a poster contest. That evening, Commissioner Cathy George said she talked to the art teachers at the school, who will help with the contest on the condition that contestants eventually get their artwork returned.
The commission decided to open the contest to all fourth graders and discussed the criteria and theme. Because the contest is voluntary, they settled on leaving the theme open to something like “What Arbor Day means to you.”
In new business, City Manager Gene Toy showed the Commission a tentative three-year plan for replanting trees at the reservoir, in order to replace trees removed last year for the installation of electric poles. Toy explained that the intention is not to plant seedlings, but juvenile trees. The importance of having landmarks at the reservoir for the the cross country course was also taken into consideration, as the coaches were consulted to ensure new plantings would not interfere with the course.
The commission looked over the project and was favorable to its moving forward. After the meeting, Toy explained that the replanting plan is in the early stage of the process. Now that the commission has given its approval, a local tree nursery will be contacted for a consultation.
Also, Toy said the city needs to get rid of 72 stumps throughout the city. However, 150 trees have been slated for removal by request from landowners, so it would be more cost effective to wait until those trees are cut down and have all of the stumps removed.
It was also announced during the meeting that Galion will receive a monetary award from Tree City, USA. A new tree (or trees) will be planted using the funds. Commissioners discussed possible locations and tentatively settled on the playground at Heise Park, because a new tree would replace two dead trees that have been cut down. As far as which species, the somerset red maple is a likely candidate.
The Street Tree Commission’s next meeting is April 1 at 7 p.m., at the City Municipal Building.