Wednesday, May 23, 2012

2011 Planting Survey

I took some time this past weekend to survey how the trees planted last year are doing. 420 trees and bushes, of various types, were to be planted last May along the south side of the berm, west of the Newhaven cul-de-sac. Last week-end I found 317 that had survived the past year and 60 others that are clearly dead. That means somewhere between 16-25% of the trees planted last year did not survive. Many more like the Burr Oak above had a very hard summer last year and are only coming back from the secondary buds that failed to wake up the previous year.

Some trees, such as all of the Shagbark Hickories, failed to survive the transplantation and never leafed out last summer. Some particularly small trees such as the Ironwoods and some of the Beeches may have been lost in the long grass last summer. About half of the spruce, pine, and fir trees have lost their needles. Some stayed green all winter only to lose their needles come spring.

Some trees only have growth down at the base of the trunk where the buds had some protection from the winter winds. The Elderberries, the Redbuds, the Speckled Alders, and the Red Osier Dogwoods all seem to fit in this category. Almost all of the Alders that were planted last year are dead or have only a few twigs close to the ground showing any signs of life.

The trees that did the best were the Sumac, Hackberries, Sugar Maples and of course the Poplar volunteers that have invaded the area from the neighbouring forest. I counted some 67 Aspen suckers springing up in several groups along the forest edge.

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