Cridersville talks trees

CRIDERSVILLE — Residents who live along Main Street in Cridersville took advantage of an opportunity to voice their concerns about planting new trees in the tree lawn — an issue that has been in the works for more than a year.

Before the handful of residents discussed the issue with Cridersville Village Council members and Cridersville Tree Commission members, Tree Commission member Ken Dreitzler outlined the tree plan on Main Street — a plan that has been researched heavily over the past year.

“The trees have about lived the life of what we want,”  Dreitzler said of the trees on the tree lawn, some of which have been already removed because of problems. “So we worked with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) on a plan.”

Tree Commission members took the ODNR plan and researched different types of trees and the zones which they are recommended to be planted and developed a final plan.

Tree Commission members decided on three different trees they feel would help beautify the village.

The three trees are Kwanzan Oriental cherry, which is a fruitless, double pink flowering tree that will bloom orange and brown colors in the fall, a Spring Snow Crab, which will bear single white flowers, is fruitless and will have red and yellow colors in the fall and a Highland Park Bigtooth maple, which will bear 1- to 2- inch samaras, yellow panicles and will be orange and red in the fall.

Each of the six zones in the village on Main Street will either have a Kwanzan Oriental cherry or a Spring Snow Crab and will be grounded at the ends by a Highland Park Bigtooth maple.

“We did research and looked at the size, beauty and fruit of each tree,” Dreitzler said.

Currently, they plan to plant 20 of these trees in the near future, and their idea is to end up with as many as 150 trees total at the end of the process, which could take four to eight years.

Tree Commission members not only did their research, but they immersed themselves into the study by attending seminars and conferences to help them make an educated plan for the tree lawn. In addition, village operators, who will take care of the maintenance of the trees, will be educated on the proper way to trim them and up keep them.

“We decided fall planning is more successful than spring planting,” Dreitzler said. “This is something that the seminars taught us.”

Other research that was done was being mindful of where they planted the trees, as Main Street resident Rick Allen asked how they were planting these trees, as he does not want one in front of a picture window of his home.

“If you give me a tree, I’ll take a tree,” Allen said during the public meeting. “We have a picture window, are you going to put a tree in front of our window?”

Dreitzler noted this will be taken into consideration, as the group who walked the street was mindful of where the new trees will be planted in relation to the houses.

Dreitzler and fellow Tree Commission member Stacey Cook noted they looked at placing the trees to make them aesthetically pleasing, instead of by measurement from one another.

“We really looked at this long and hard,” Dreitzler said of the tree lawn project.

In the past years, the trees have not maintained, but Dreitzler noted they cannot “drop the ball” this time and are doing their research and are getting educated on each step of the process.

“In four to eight years, we hope to have a complete turnover of trees that will be the same height and produce color,” Dreitzler said.

One Main Street resident brought up the fact trees will make it harder to mow their lawns.

Cook noted that this plan will make the tree lawn as easy to mow as possible, as the trees will be mulched in a square, from the curb to sidewalk, and the village will maintain the mulch and up keep of the tree, and the home owner will be responsible for mowing the grass portion of the tree lawn.

Roots and the height of each tree was another issue brought up during the meeting, and Cook said that the height will be controlled by the trimming that the village will do, and that they cannot guarantee how Mother Nature will act when it comes to the roots, but the commission has done their research with the trees and have had talks with the natural gas company representatives about the natural gas lines in the ground and the concern with those.

“When our tree lawn was vacant, it seemed like we lost luster and beautification on Main Street,” Mayor Lorali Myers said. “We are taking this issue very seriously. The beauty that they bring is something I’ve been very proud of.”