As seen below, another giant oak has been removed from Orlando's shrinking tree canopy.
One of the results of Hurricane Charlie and Friends (great band name) was that a lot of the area's mature trees were sent into a botanical PTSD as they were literally rocked down to their foundations. Coupled with changes in weather patterns and shorter life cycles for oak varietals planted en-mass a century or so ago, the already stressed giants are starting to die off. Winter Park is looking at losing over 30% of it's mature tree canopy over the next few years. Most cities in the region are attempting to replace the trees as we lose them but how can you replace over 100 years of growth with skinny little saplings? It's not a great situation for the me-me, immediate gratification generation as we're faced with an immediate future city scape that has a little less green and a little more concrete.
This beauty behind Mennello Museum of American Art was decapitated earlier today and according to an anonymous admirer it had some rot towards the crown but was otherwise a really beautiful specimen.
If our region is faced with losing such a large number of mature trees, it may make sense to work them into some sort of monument or public art project, rather than grinding them into mulch. There's already the dolphin tree in Winter Park that was lovingly sculpted by Mr. Ross Rupp in honor of his daughter, Col. Papi near Mead Gardens created by artist Ken Bowser, or this piece below in Akron, Ohio. With the focus of Mennello Museum being mostly on American folk art, the removal of this tree could have been an opportunity for the City of Orlando to combine it's environmental concerns with it's recent foray into public art (#seeartorlando), but instead, we're left with a little bit of sawdust and a little less shade.
"Plant a new Truffula. Treat it with care.
Give it clean water. And feed it fresh air.
Grow a forest. Protect it from axes that hack.
Then the Lorax
and all of his friends
may come back.”
? Dr. Seuss, The Lorax