Master Naturalists Plant Trees on Earth Day

By Carolyn Henderson

The El Camino Real chapter planted native trees in three Cameron parks on Earth Day, then removed some invasive species that they “girdled” last year. Twelve members and a couple of family volunteers planted Bur Oaks in Cameron City Park, Orchard Park, and Wilson-Ledbetter Park to promote native species to help the natural eco-system locally.

The tree-planting gang at Cameron City Park

Quite a few trees were lost in and around Cameron during the ice storm this year, so the chapter is making an effort to replace them. Any type of native oak tree is considered the most beneficial to the local eco-system. Native trees are more acclimated to the heat and drought conditions that are occurring fairly often. 

Planting in Orchard Park

In addition to planting the trees, the members removed the three Glossy Privets at Wilson-Ledbetter Park that had been girdled over a year ago. Girdling is a method to remove trees without herbicides to avoid harming other trees. Alan Rudd brought his chain saw and a trailer. He cut them down and the members and volunteers loaded all the branches on the trailer. They were removed and burned to prevent resprouting elsewhere.

Pondering a privet at Wilson-Ledbetter Park

Alan also planted an Eastern Redbud in the trunk of an old dead tree at Cameron City Park in an experiment to see if it will grow there and add some color to the park. Members have volunteered to keep all the trees watered on a weekly basis through the summer and early fall. We planted the trees in the manner recommended by our recent speaker from the A & M Forest Service. 

We plan to add more trees to Wilson-Ledbetter in the fall. 

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