Recently GM happened on a photo (above) he took in the middle of September 2013 of his street as a giant crane was being used to install his new HVAC equipment. What he noticed was how much worse the trees appear on this block than they do now, almost exactly three years later:
Starting on the left, you can see how much healthier the oak is:
It was practically dead this time three years ago. Now after a neighbor started taking care of it it is thriving. It’s grown about 4-5 feet and filled out nicely.
Next down the block is a London Plane. GM’s written about how well this tree has grown before. It was doing well in 2013 and it’s still doing well. It’s got to be 25 to 30 feet tall now with a spread of at least 15 feet. And here’s what it looked like shortly after it was planted in 2011:
GM diligently watered this tree for the first three years it was in the ground here. Now it’s strong enough, with deep enough roots that it doesn’t need any additional care.
The next tree on the block worth discussing is the Sugar Maple right outside GM’s house. In 2013 GM was greatly distressed to see that the crown had turned completely brown by the middle of August as you can see in the 2013 shot:
Since this tree provides excellent shade of his house, GM does not want to lose it. But maples are dying across Georgetown due to the stresses of our increasingly hot and dry summers. So to give it a chance, GM started watering it deeply throughout the summer. It appears to have worked because despite this summer being just as hot, the foliage is considerably greener:
Street trees are precious in a city like ours. They provide beauty as well as relief from the heat. But for too long they were ignored by the city, and we’re still suffering from that legacy. Thankfully organizations like Trees for Georgetown and Casey Trees have stepped in to care for our trees and replace the sick and dead trees that can’t be saved.
And, hey, look at that: it’s Trees for Georgetown’s annual fundraiser tonight! It’s a little late, but I suspect that if you email them (firstname.lastname@example.org) they’ll happily sell you a last minute ticket.