City’s winter tree removal in full swing

Superintendent reiterates protocol

By Melanie Yingst -

TROY — During the winter months, the city of Troy park staff addresses the city’s diseased and damaged trees that need to be removed before spring.

On Tuesday, city of Troy’s Park Superintendent Jeremy Drake, a certified arborist, advised the board that the park department is currently in their winter tree removal program and addressed a recent complaint.

Drake said residents are always notified by letter before a tree is removed. Drake reported he had one resident complain on social media after a tree was removed from the curb lawn in front of a home on East Main Street last month.

“I just want to reiterate to the board and to our citizens that I put letters out to the homeowners before trees are removed,” Drake said. “We don’t take trees out that don’t need to come out.”

Drake said the letter states why they believe the tree needs to be removed and includes how to contact the park department for more information about a tagged tree. A tree is often removed 24 hours after the letter is left at the residence. Trees removed from the curb lawn are in the city’s right-of-way, therefore, the parks department removes the tree and stump at no charge.

“As a certified arborist myself, I assess those trees, make sure we make contact and proceed with removal,” Drake said.

On Wednesday, Drake said a neighbor had contacted the parks department to remove a diseased tree in their curb lawn when the parks department spotted the tree that also was determined to be damaged by emerald ash borer. Drake said he has been working on a tree removal crew this winter and examined the tree in question himself, but never was contacted by the homeowner.

Drake said the parks department assess trees in the fall, looking for damaged, dying and dead trees to be removed in the winter.

Drake said with the emerald ash borer disease spiking in 2012, the parks department simply could not keep up with its annual replacement so the department implemented its “Adopt-A-Tree” program. Plantings can be done as long as the ground is not frozen. Drake said the program has been successful since the residents are invested in the tree’s growth. Drake said the parks department will plant the tree in the spring, fall and winter months.

Residents wishing to have a tree planted in the curb lawn can take advantage of the city’s Adopt-A-Tree program. Residents can purchase a tree at a local nursery of their choice. The Park Department will transport and plant purchased trees at no additional cost. Call the Park Department office at (937) 335-4612 to learn more or to schedule a planting.

Superintendent reiterates protocol

By Melanie Yingst