June 25, 2022

Old Lyme’s Tree Commission Celebrates Arbor Day with Three New Tree Plantings on North Town Green

Old Lyme First Selectman Tim Griswold (second from right) stands with Old Lyme Tree Commission members Joan Flynn, Fred Behringer and Joanne DiCamillo. Members missing from photo are : Michael Gaffey, Emily Griswold, and Anne Bing. All photos by J. DiCamillo.

OLD LYME — It is Arbor Day today and the Old Lyme Tree Commission celebrated a day earlier by planting three trees on the Sill Lane and Lyme Street Town Green.

It was a blustery 40 degrees with a sunny sky early Thursday morning, April 28, when the carrier from Morningstar Nursery arrived at the agreed location with three young tree specimens.

The nursery carrier arriving with the trees.

The landscape crew from River End Landscape was waiting onsite to unload the trees, remove the shipping materials, prepare the holes and set them into the ground with staking and mulching to follow.

This long-anticipated planting project was delayed for two years due to the short supply of trees in Connecticut nurseries.

In the summer 2021, acting on a recommendation from the Newport R.I. Tree Commission, the Old Lyme Tree Commission reached out beyond Connecticut state borders to Morningstar in R.I., who had the tree species the commission sought.

The commission immediately reserved them for planting in spring 2022, thus making their goal a reality … finally!

Adding nutrients to the soil.

All of the trees will, in time, enhance the Town Green’s landscape with their beauty and color. The three trees are:

  • Nyssa sylvatica, Black Gum:- a beautiful native tree with glossy green foliage in summer that turns scarlet, yellow and orange in the fall and produces small black berries, which birds love.
  • Prunus sargentii, Columnar Cherry:- an ornamental tree, will grow in a vase-shaped form, with shiny, dark green foliage, reddish-brown bark and masses of pink blossoms in May.
  • Syringa reticulata, Japanese Tree Lilac:- a small ornamental tree with cherry-like bark and large plumes of white flowers in June.

Placing the lilac tree in the planting hole.

The commission encourages all community members to remember the words of Emily Bronte, “Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree.” Celebrate Arbor Day today by taking Bronte’s words to heart and consider how and where you can plant a tree!

Editor’s Note: For more information about Arbor Day, visit the Arbor Day Foundation’s website.