Mayor Pat Hewitt proclaimed Friday, April 21, 2017, as Arbor Day in the City of Phillipsburg. Two Honey Locust Shademaster trees were planted at the Phillipsburg Community Building in honor of the occasion. These trees were a part of a grant received from the Phillips County Community Foundation (PCCF) to improve community beautification as well as conservation and environment. Last fall the City of Phillipsburg, on behalf of the Phillipsburg Shade Tree Commission, submitted a grant request to the Phillips County Community Foundation as a part of the Dane G. Hansen Community Grant Fund for Phillips County. A grant for $5,000 was awarded by PCCF to purchase and plant trees on city right-of-ways.
Recent droughts have taken a toll on many of the trees within the city. The Shade Tree Commission members, Howard King, Brad Lare, and Tracey Beach, have worked closely with the City of Phillipsburg to remove dead trees from the city’s right-of-way and prune other trees. The annual budget for the Shade Tree Commission is $5,000. After paying for tree maintenance, little funding is left for tree replacement. In the last 11 years, 1,055 trees have been pruned, 13 trees have been relocated, 234 trees have been removed, and 19 trees have been planted. The continued removal of trees without replacement will cause the beauty of our community to suffer. Even with the work that has been done, there are still many trees that need care.
The funding received through the Phillips County Community Foundation has allowed 20 trees to be purchased and planted this spring. After evaluating the types of trees suited for this area, the Shade Tree Commission ordered 4 Accolade Elm, 4 Common Hackberry, 4 Honey Locust Shademaster, 4 Legend Linden, and 4 Emerald Lustre Norway Maple. The trees, varying from 1.5” to 2.5” in diameter, were picked up at the Davenport, Nebraska tree farm and delivered to Phillipsburg by Coomes, Inc. Solida and Sons Tree Service have assisted with planting the trees throughout this past week.
The City of Phillipsburg and the Shade Tree Commission appreciate the support of the property owners next to the newly planted trees who will water and care for the trees. Thank you also to the Phillips County Community Foundation and the Dane G. Hansen Foundation for their support of our community and this project.
Shade Tree Commission members Tracey Beach, Brad Lare, & Howard King.
Some little helpers work with Jeff Solida, Solida & Sons Tree Service, to prepare for planting a new tree on 2nd Street.