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Albemarle High School Students Plant Native Trees


This semester Albemarle High School’s AP Environmental Science students developed a landscaping plan for the front entrance of the high school to replace the scraggly Eastern red cedars that had lined this part of Hydraulic Road.   The student plan included a variety of native trees including dogwoods, serviceberries, red oaks, red maples, redbuds, and fringe trees. The class teacher, Diana Webber, contacted CATS through our website asking if we could offer guidance on how best to plant them.  On June 2, several Tree Stewards worked side-by-side with Diana, the students, and the school’s grounds crew to plant thirteen of the trees. A few remaining trees were planted the following week.  Since the county specified that the trees should have at least 2-inch trunks, the trees arrived bagged and burlapped and were therefore very heavy and awkward to plant.   Tree Stewards normally recommend bare-rooting to make planting easier, but with summer heat approaching, this treatment could have been too much of a shock to the trees.  Instead the Tree Stewards cut the wire baskets, and with the help of the students, rolled the trees into holes prepared by the grounds crew.   The students cheerfully helped with the planting, watering, mulching, and clean-up.


The week before the planting Tim Maywalt and Phil Stokes met with Diana Webber and the head of the grounds crew to plan the work.  On planting day, Phil Stokes, Tom Wild, Tom Terrill, William Hammersky, JoAnn Dalley, and Tim Maywalt, provided guidance, tools, and oversight.  Students from several of the Environmental Sciences classes participated in the project.  When they return to school in future years, they will see the progress of their trees; Tree Stewards will be able to enjoy the beauty of this wonderful student project as we drive along Hydraulic Road in the future to our meetings and training sessions at Ivy Creek.

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