The following is a press release from the Framingham Public Schools
FRAMINGHAM – Several Framingham departments are collaborating on a plan to remove and replant 10 dead oak trees from the McCarthy Elementary School site.
Over the last few years there have been several different but constant stressors which have contributed to what is known as ‘oak mortality’.
This issue is not unique to Framingham and is being addressed on a state and regional level as well.
“We suffered through a drought which ended 3 years ago, this began to stress out our oak population in the region and due to / immediately following that drought we had a significant gypsy moth and caterpillar outbreak,” said Kyle Grendell, Supervisor of Forestry Operations & Tree Warden at City of Framingham. “This defoliated our oak trees for another two consecutive years. Most trees can sustain these stressors for a year or two, but after three most are unable to bounce back. This is because they have depleted all of their reserve resources and could not recoup the needed nutrients. The good news is we are seeing a decline in the gypsy moth population with the rainfall amounts received since last year and expect the gypsy population to continue a downward trend allowing the remaining oak trees to bounce back.”
“The trees along the front landscape of McCarthy Elementary School have been part of the facade for many years, providing shade to thousands of children in the City of Framingham,” said Dr. Robert Tremblay, Superintendent of Schools. “It’s unfortunate that they need to be removed, but it is an important step to ensure the safety of our students, staff, and parents who will be circulating through the grounds of the school. We look forward to working with Parks and Recreation to replace the trees that will breathe new life into our school property.”
“The replacement trees that will be planted at McCarthy Elementary School will be primarily Oak and Maple Trees that will provide a revamped landscape for the front of the School,” said Thomas Begin, Deputy Director of Parks, Recreation & Cultural Affairs. “These plantings are tentatively scheduled to occur during the fall and, weather dependent, may carry over into the spring season. Once completed, this new landscape will complement the surrounding area and work to continue providing shade for the McCarthy community and neighborhood. In addition, the City will work to mill the removed trees, utilizing the logs and wood for various projects throughout Framingham.”