49 new trees in Knollwood Park

by Markus Philipp

The 2013 tasks of the Park Rejuvenation have been succesfully completed last week with the planting of 49 new trees from a budget of $ 25,0000. Naturally they are not making a big visual splash at this time of the year but we can look forward to a very different park with a shady, tree lined, avenue-like trail winding through the greenspace, connecting bordering streets with the school, the sports fields and the playground.

We are especially excited to have a varity of beautiful large stature trees installed: 25 Sugar Maples, 16 London Plane Trees and 8 Tulip Trees will be complementing the existing mature Lindens, Pines, Norway and Silver Maples.

Each tree will be individually supplied with a 100 Liter watering bag next year to ensure a healthy root growth in the critical first two years. Watering has been contracted for two years to make sure that this investment will turn into a leafy canopy in summer and a display of colours in fall.

In 2014 the next steps will be taken to design, tender and build the Community Pavilion, close the tree gaps along East and Stirling Avenues and secure the East/Stirling Ave. park corner against people driivng their cars into the park.

The plane trees (picture below) are located behind the backstop of the ball diamond and on both sides of the central trail mixed with sugar maples.

The London plane is a large deciduous tree growing 20–30 m (66–98 ft), exceptionally over 40 m (131 ft) tall, with a trunk up to 3 m (10 ft) or more in circumference. The bark is usually pale grey-green, smooth and exfoliating. The leaves are thick and stiff-textured, broad, palmately lobed, superficially maple-like, the leaf blade 10–20 cm (4–8 in) long and 12–25 cm (5–10 in) broad, with a petiole 3–10 cm (1–4 in) long. It is one of the predominant park and boulevard trees in many European cities including London and Paris.

The tulip trees are planted in a row on the west side of the soccer field and in the triangle towards the school.

The tulip tree is the Western Hemisphere representative of the two-species genus Liriodendron, and the tallest eastern hardwood. It is native to eastern North America from Southern Ontario and Illinois eastward across southern New England. It can grow to more than 50 m (165 feet) in virgin cove forests of the Appalachian Mountains, often with no limbs until it reaches 25–30 m (80–100 feet) in height, making it a very valuable timber tree. It is fast-growing, without the common problems of weak wood strength and short lifespan often seen in fast-growing species. The flowers are pale green or yellow (rarely white), with an orange band on the tepals; they yield large quantities of nectar.

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