Controlling Tree of Heaven
Tree of Heaven, or Ailanthus, occurs in the park mostly in scattered individual plants or small patches. A small patch will develop near a mature seed-producing tree where there has been logging or other disturbance. Large patches, such as you will see along some roadsides, are rare. The largest one I've found so far, coveriing about half an acre, is not far from the Equestrian Center. This summer we went through this patch, pulling up small stems and cutting most of the large ones. Some of the cut stumps and the largest trunks were treated with herbicide. A couple of months later, this is what the site looks like; lots of small sprouts, of which many are seedlings responding to the opening of the canopy. The treatment now called for is hand-pulling and uprooting all these sprouts, and that is in process with another hour or two of work to do.
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Thoughts on the park, its residents and how to preserve its natural beauty.