By Don C. Wilkerson
Galveston, TX (February 27, 2011)- Several agencies and civic organizations, including the Galveston Island Tree Conservancy, have taken on the task of replacing the thousands of trees lost to Hurricane Ike.
On March 26, the conservancy, in conjunction with Texas A&M University, will plant hundreds throughout the island in public rights-of-way. Participants in conservancy’s “Neighborwoods” program will be given a few options in the type of tree(s) to be planted – depending on the site.Where there are no power lines or other overhead obstructions, there’s a list of “large” trees to choose from. In areas with a little less room, there is a list of “small” trees. Even if you’re not a participant in this communitywide project, here are my top choices for both large and small trees for Galveston.
Among the trees to be planted are:
* Live oak- One of the icons of pre-Ike Galveston and by far the leading species being replanted. This evergreen tree can reach a spread exceeding twice its height. A Texas native, live oaks are drought tolerant and adaptable to a wide range of soil conditions. Live oaks have a medium rate of growth.
* Cedar elm- There’s nothing flashy about the deciduous cedar elm, but this native Texas tree is well adapted to the area and tough as a boot. It can reach a height/spread of up to 80 feet. It’s one of the few trees in our area that produces some fall color.
* Bald cypress- This deciduous tree is another Texas native that can grow as tall as 80 feet. It does well under dry conditions or standing water. It can form “knees,” which may be difficult to mow around, but still is an outstanding selection for the area. The bald cypress has a medium growth rate.
The Galveston Daily News- Re-green Galveston with Neighborwoods trees