It seems to me that over the last few years, GHI has been forced to remove more larger trees than usual in close proximity to my North End home. A beautiful, large tree in the common area just outside of my garden side yard was one of these larger trees. I am a little sad every time I look out and notice its stump after more than 20 years of watching it grow and mature.
As I was walking my dogs one day, I observed tree removal workmen struggling to remove pieces of what must have been a large tree to a nearby truck. I did not arrive in time to see the tree before they cut it down and removed its limbs. The circumference of the these tree sections was large enough to make me curious about how large a stump remained, especially as I saw prodigious amounts of sawdust left near the inner walkway. Some workers were still clearing up brush and smaller pieces of wood, and I had to keep moving, so I decided to find the stump another day.
A few days later during another dog walk, I did find the stump. I felt sadness as I gazed at all that remained to mark what it had once been. This had been a large, old tree. It provided shelter to animals, shade for everyone, helped improve the surrounding air, and added a graceful presence to the landscape for those who slowed to notice. It graced its corner not only for decades but into a new century, standing over generations of families passing by.
Recently, neighbors and friends asked me if I had seen or heard about a couple of large tree stumps where each of the stump’s rings had been dated and labeled using a permanent ink magic marker. I hadn’t, and as these friends told me where they were located, I made a note to take the time to find them. Then I became busy with other things and never got around to it.
This week while on another dog walk, a GHI neighbor stopped me and gave me a sheet of paper with the locations for two trees whose rings had been dated and labeled. One of the trees was not far from where I was walking, so I decided to go and find it.
This tree stump is located in the garden side yard of 6E Hillside, an end unit that borders the inner walkway, several buildings before you reach the tunnel that takes you to the town center. The stump abuts the corner where the inner walkway and a side path intersect.
It was the same stump that I had seen just after it had been cut down. As I looked at the marked rings on the stump, it seemed a fitting grave marker and memorial for a tree that stood in that location before the founding of Greenbelt and Greenbelt Homes.
The second tree stump with dated rings is located across the road from 59 Ridge Road. I haven’t walked to this stump yet, so I can’t provide more details. I hope that other large trees are remembered in this same way. Enjoy!