Chainsaw massacre takes place on Dundas streets

News Oct 30, 2009 Ancaster News

It seemed like a cruel Halloween prank.

After having received the routine courtesy letter from the City of Hamilton forestry department indicating tree maintenance would soon begin on city trees in our part of Dundas, imagine my shock upon arriving home last week to find at least a quarter of the branches of our nearly hundred-year-old sugar maple just plain gone.

In fact, missing were all the lowest and healthiest branches, which provide the majority of shade in our modest front yard; a yard that I have planted with shade-loving plants over the past 14 years.

These large branches provided not just shade but also a sense of privacy from our front porch. These very alive branches were not interfering with hydro wires, sidewalks or any structures. They were helping to keep our house cool on hot summer days. So why would a city forestry crew remove them without even attempting to consult us?

I expressed my shock to the area forestry supervisor, who agreed there was no justification for the removal of the branches and apologized. But then he told me that it was too bad that I hadn’t responded to the courtesy letter and indicated I didn’t want those branches removed. What? Why would I ever have thought they would have considered removing them in the first place?

Then there’s the timing issue. Why are these so-called tree experts removing large maple branches in November when pruning rules say they should only be removed between leafing out in the spring and into July?

Maple trees are unable to heal their wounds in the late fall and will bleed uncontrollably in the spring when the sap flows; sometimes to death. Our once beautiful tree will likely be firewood in the next few years.

Apparently this 15-year pruning cycle is a City of Hamilton phenomenon which the surrounding amalgamated communities must now endure. I’m not against intelligent and communicative maintenance of city trees.

But this kind of thoughtless pruning has the hallmark of make-work at the expense of our town’s beauty. Don’t trust that these so-called arborists are looking out for the health of our trees.

Jim Koegler, Dundas

Chainsaw massacre takes place on Dundas streets

News Oct 30, 2009 Ancaster News

It seemed like a cruel Halloween prank.

After having received the routine courtesy letter from the City of Hamilton forestry department indicating tree maintenance would soon begin on city trees in our part of Dundas, imagine my shock upon arriving home last week to find at least a quarter of the branches of our nearly hundred-year-old sugar maple just plain gone.

In fact, missing were all the lowest and healthiest branches, which provide the majority of shade in our modest front yard; a yard that I have planted with shade-loving plants over the past 14 years.

These large branches provided not just shade but also a sense of privacy from our front porch. These very alive branches were not interfering with hydro wires, sidewalks or any structures. They were helping to keep our house cool on hot summer days. So why would a city forestry crew remove them without even attempting to consult us?

I expressed my shock to the area forestry supervisor, who agreed there was no justification for the removal of the branches and apologized. But then he told me that it was too bad that I hadn’t responded to the courtesy letter and indicated I didn’t want those branches removed. What? Why would I ever have thought they would have considered removing them in the first place?

Then there’s the timing issue. Why are these so-called tree experts removing large maple branches in November when pruning rules say they should only be removed between leafing out in the spring and into July?

Maple trees are unable to heal their wounds in the late fall and will bleed uncontrollably in the spring when the sap flows; sometimes to death. Our once beautiful tree will likely be firewood in the next few years.

Apparently this 15-year pruning cycle is a City of Hamilton phenomenon which the surrounding amalgamated communities must now endure. I’m not against intelligent and communicative maintenance of city trees.

But this kind of thoughtless pruning has the hallmark of make-work at the expense of our town’s beauty. Don’t trust that these so-called arborists are looking out for the health of our trees.

Jim Koegler, Dundas

Chainsaw massacre takes place on Dundas streets

News Oct 30, 2009 Ancaster News

It seemed like a cruel Halloween prank.

After having received the routine courtesy letter from the City of Hamilton forestry department indicating tree maintenance would soon begin on city trees in our part of Dundas, imagine my shock upon arriving home last week to find at least a quarter of the branches of our nearly hundred-year-old sugar maple just plain gone.

In fact, missing were all the lowest and healthiest branches, which provide the majority of shade in our modest front yard; a yard that I have planted with shade-loving plants over the past 14 years.

These large branches provided not just shade but also a sense of privacy from our front porch. These very alive branches were not interfering with hydro wires, sidewalks or any structures. They were helping to keep our house cool on hot summer days. So why would a city forestry crew remove them without even attempting to consult us?

I expressed my shock to the area forestry supervisor, who agreed there was no justification for the removal of the branches and apologized. But then he told me that it was too bad that I hadn’t responded to the courtesy letter and indicated I didn’t want those branches removed. What? Why would I ever have thought they would have considered removing them in the first place?

Then there’s the timing issue. Why are these so-called tree experts removing large maple branches in November when pruning rules say they should only be removed between leafing out in the spring and into July?

Maple trees are unable to heal their wounds in the late fall and will bleed uncontrollably in the spring when the sap flows; sometimes to death. Our once beautiful tree will likely be firewood in the next few years.

Apparently this 15-year pruning cycle is a City of Hamilton phenomenon which the surrounding amalgamated communities must now endure. I’m not against intelligent and communicative maintenance of city trees.

But this kind of thoughtless pruning has the hallmark of make-work at the expense of our town’s beauty. Don’t trust that these so-called arborists are looking out for the health of our trees.

Jim Koegler, Dundas