Your Viewpoint: What ails Portland’s trees?

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I watched with interest the process of rebuilding the sidewalk in Bayside where the trees were planted (Portland Phoenix, Dec. 1). I did not like what I was seeing, the contractors were filling the holes with their leftover cement and gravel before planting the trees. So I don’t have much hope for those trees; most of the trees that were planted along the Bayside Trail look sickly and are in fact dying as they were planted in clay.

And all the birches that were planted where the YWCA was on Spring Street are dead or dying. They were planted in fill. In fact, most of the trees in the city look sickly around the middle of summer.

I don’t think it’s salt, I think it’s the droughts that we are having every summer and the quality of the soil, which also means that the trees are also going dormant prematurely which is a shame because we need those trees to be carbon filters.

If that’s the kind of respect that we are going to give to the trees that are planted then we might as well just dump the $250,000 down a sewer and not plant trees because we are going to plant trees just to see them slowly die as long as the droughts keep happening.

Larry L. Niskanen
Portland

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