Protecting greenway trees from construction

According to plans for sewage construction in the greenway, many trees within the construction zone are slated for removal.  A construction fence will be provided, helping the contractor avoid damage to trees outside this zone.

However, there are a few large trees just outside the line that may sustain injury to their roots, with death resulting.  It's these trees that residents should make a special effort to save.

I found a good publication here describing how to protect these trees.

"Trees can be damaged or killed by a wide variety of construction activities. Some practices lead to obvious injuries such as broken branches or torn bark. Open wounds of this type deplete a plant's energy resources and provide entry points for insects, or for diseases such as oak wilt."

"The worst damage, however, often remains hidden underground. Roots are one of the most vital parts of a tree. They are responsible for nutrient and water uptake, store energy, and anchor the plant. Because they are so important, it is critical that you protect roots that lie in the path of construction."

Here are some additional points:  
  • The vulnerable large trees just outside the construction area should be found and marked.
  • Using guidelines in the article, the root area around the tree should be marked.  Some species have larger sensitive root zones than others.
  • The ground surface can be protected with wood chips, which later provides mulch for the tree.
  • Keep the tree well-watered and fertilized before and after construction.
  • Some additional trees might be threatened by the lateral sewage lines, and these trees won't be protected by the construction fence.  This hasn't been addressed in the planning.
  • Residents should keep an eye on these trees during construction, and raise a fuss if the trees are unnecessarily threatened. 

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