Plant a tree, care for a community

By Staci Matlock
editor@taosnews.com
Posted 4/25/19

This is Earth Week and every day is a chance to help the beautiful little blue planet we all share.One way to do that is to plant a tree or take care of the ones you already have in your yard.Trees, …

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Plant a tree, care for a community

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This is Earth Week and every day is a chance to help the beautiful little blue planet we all share.

One way to do that is to plant a tree or take care of the ones you already have in your yard.

Trees, like us, grow old and die. It's just natural.

That's true even of the towering and venerated old cottonwoods on the Plaza.

It is hard to think about them coming down, these trees that have shaded so many generations of Taoseños. But some experienced and knowledgeable arborists in town (how lucky we are in a small town like Taos to have several of these unheralded experts) agree with town officials that the trees have become a hazard. They are nearly - or more than - a century old.

Some of the tree limbs are in danger of coming down and hurting someone.

This is the time to plant new trees to replace the old. Trees usually can reproduce their own progeny in natural landscapes.

But in the hardscape of towns, where pavement and packed soils make it hard for saplings to take hold, trees often need help to foster the next generation. Certified arborists who make up the Taos Tree Board will be on hand Friday (April 26) at the plaza to celebrate Arbor Day and to teach us all how to plant and care for trees properly. They'll be planting several trees in hopes they'll be growing strong and sturdy by the time the old cottonwoods have to come down.

As the weather warms up and dries out now around Taos, it is time to make sure your trees are mulched and watered deeply on a regular basis.

They'll thank you with lush green and cooling shade.

The Taos Tree Board has been hard at work surveying the town's trees. They have a solid idea now of how many trees are in the town's parks and public places. They are almost finished with a plan for how the town can care for those trees to keep them healthy, even through the challenges of drought and climate change.

They'll need volunteers to keep the community's trees thriving. An "adopt a tree" program would be a fun way to get people involved, protecting their special public tree. That's something the tree board could help launch. Look for more information soon in The Taos News and at taosnews.com on how you can get involved. Read the monthly column on tree care published by members of the Taos Tree Board on the second Thursday of each month in The Taos News.

Planting a tree, like planting a garden, is an act of hope for the future. Come join in that act.

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