2009-05-07 / Front Page

Boy Scouts complete trees signage project

Eagle Scout candidate Jimmy Perry, center, Vaughan Nelson- Lee, left, and Josh Nolan placed signs identifying 24 significant trees in Jamestown Eagle Scout candidate Jimmy Perry, center, Vaughan Nelson- Lee, left, and Josh Nolan placed signs identifying 24 significant trees in Jamestown Jimmy Perry coordinated the installation of informational signs identifying "Significant Trees" in Jamestown on Friday, April 17, as part of an Eagle Scout Project. Assisting him with the project were Scouts Ryan Gib, Hayden S. Maclean, Vaughan Nelson-Lee, Josh Nolan and Ben Norman.

The Jamestown Tree Preservation and Protection Committee supplied the Scouts with small plaques with the common name and scientific name of the trees. Perry constructed wooden plaque stands for use with smaller trees. The Scouts placed these in front of trees. If the tree was large the signs were attached with professional tree tacks.

The Tree Committee created the original list nearly 20 years ago. The idea was to create a town walking tour where well-grown examples of various trees could be seen. At that time it was limited to the Howland and Clinton Avenue area.

Tree committee chairman Jim Rugh said that one of the most notable trees on the original list was an American Elm. "At one time this beautiful big native tree was a common street tree in this country. They were nearly wiped out in the 1920s by Dutch Elm Disease. We are fortunate to have a couple of very nice Elms that have managed to escape the disease, including one on Narragansett Avenue," he said

The committee revised the list in 2002 and the geographic area was expanded to add additional rare or unusual trees, such as a large pecan tree also on Narragansett Avenue. A brochure was produced that included a description of the trees and a location map.

Rugh said, "One of the problems with the Significant Tree tour was that even with the brochure people had trouble identifying some of the trees."

According to committee member Tony Antine, "Over the years some of the trees died or were removed. The Eagle Scout project allowed us to physically verify the trees. Now we need to see about adding a few more trees to the tour."

The 2002 brochure is now out of print. A new version is being developed and will be available shortly.

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